Non-repetition of pronouns

Milad333

Senior Member
Armenian
I need to know what's the reference of the pronoun "he" in the colored sentence?
is "he" refer back to the bleeding man? if so, why has the author talked about the man in the window again? and not used the "he" pronoun one more time?
I mean it seems to me the author is talking about to different person but the text is saying something else.

Text:
The bleeding prisoner was Kenneth Hess. About thirty minutes later, he reappeared at the window and, to the surprise of those troopers still watching, he began climbing up in slow motion, again wedging himself between the window glass and the outside bars but now trying to reach the window on the floor above...Although this incident was quickly reported to state officials, the troopers and COs were, as one put it, “extremely suspicious that he might be walking into a trap and that the man in the window was merely used as bait to get them close to the building.” It was not a trap.

Blood in the water by Heather Ann Thompson
 
Last edited by a moderator:
  • entangledbank

    Senior Member
    English - South-East England
    Yes, it is slightly confusing, and slightly wrong. That word 'he' refers back to 'one'. One (of them) said, 'I was extremely suspicious that I might be walking . . .', and in indirect speech, he said he was suspicious that he might be . . . (or they said they were . . ., meaning the troopers and COs). But this sentence converts direct 'I' to indirect 'he' while still keeping it in a direct quotation. It shouldn't have been done that way.
     

    velisarius

    Senior Member
    British English (Sussex)
    It sounds as though the words of one of the troopers is not being reported verbatim, as indicated by the speech marks, but in the third person.

    One of the troopers or COs said that he was extremely suspicious that he might be walking into a trap...

    (crossposted)
     

    lingobingo

    Senior Member
    English - England
    I agree. If that’s the meaning, it’s unbelievably badly written (or edited?).

    It would have made sense as:
    “extremely suspicious that we might be walking into a trap and that the man in the window was merely used as bait to get us close to the building.”
     

    Milad333

    Senior Member
    Armenian
    It sounds as though the words of one of the troopers is not being reported verbatim, as indicated by the speech marks, but in the third person.

    One of the troopers or COs said that he was extremely suspicious that he might be walking into a trap...

    (crossposted)
    I think it makes sense somehow.
     
    Last edited:

    Milad333

    Senior Member
    Armenian
    I agree. If that’s the meaning, it’s unbelievably badly written (or edited?).

    It would have made sense as:
    “extremely suspicious that we might be walking into a trap and that the man in the window was merely used as bait to get us close to the building.”
    No, I did not any editing. I just removed a couple of sentences in the middle of the text which shows with a few points.
     
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