What do you think of us doing it/our doing it?

Jackiexp3

New Member
English
I recently learned that the phrase, "me doing something," should be "my doing something." I forgot what this rule was called. Does this also mean that the question would be correctly written as "What do you think of our doing it?" as opposed to "What do you think of us doing it?"
 
  • PaulQ

    Senior Member
    UK
    English - England
    I recently learned that the phrase, "me doing something," should be "my doing something." I forgot what this rule was called.
    (a) This is not true
    (b) There are no rules (see my signature.)

    There can be a difference in meaning/nuance, but both "me doing something," and "my doing something" are possible.

    My mother does not like me climbing (=to climb) the tree :tick:, but she doesn't mind you/your climbing :tick:(to climb) it - it isn't fair!

    If you are in an exam, use "my doing"; otherwise, in real English, you can use either.
     

    Uncle Jack

    Senior Member
    British English
    Welcome to the forum.

    I recently learned that the phrase, "me doing something," should be "my doing something.
    Sometimes. However, you would not say "This is a photograph of my running in the London Marathon".

    Even when using a possessive pronoun is more "correct", the rule (such as it is) is often ignored, even by people who know of its existence. There are very few situations where could make a difference in meaning.
    Does this also mean that the question would be correctly written as "What do you think of our doing it?" as opposed to "What do you think of us doing it?"
    "Our doing it" is correct, but I would not worry about it in most situations, unless you want to write in formally correct English.
     

    Jackiexp3

    New Member
    English
    Thanks for the help!

    On a different note, I have learned that reversing the order of a sentence or omitting parts of the sentence to see if it still makes sense is a good thing to do.
     

    Roxxxannne

    Senior Member
    American English (New England and NYC)
    That depends. 'Our doing it, what do you think of?' doesn't make a lot of sense.
     

    SevenDays

    Senior Member
    Spanish
    I recently learned that the phrase, "me doing something," should be "my doing something." I forgot what this rule was called. Does this also mean that the question would be correctly written as "What do you think of our doing it?" as opposed to "What do you think of us doing it?"

    Well, there is a rule, as far as syntax is concerned.
    Finite verbs take subject pronouns as subject: I do, she does.
    Non-finite verbs take either possessive pronouns or object pronouns as subject: my/me doing; our/us doing.
    That's syntax/structure. In terms of meaning, generally speaking, possessive pronoun place more emphasis on the activity, while object pronouns put more emphasis on the person. In many cases, however, this distinction is irrelevant (as far as the speaker is concerned), so that the two forms are interchangeable.
     
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