Whose vs which

Discussion in 'Italian-English' started by Queva, Mar 2, 2006.

  1. Queva Senior Member

    hi all,
    translating this bit:
    il libro e' basato su un nuovo approccio all'argomento che intende contribuire al dibattito etc.
    I come up with:
    the book is based on a new approach on the subject (which or whose?) aim is to contribute to the debate etc..
    ..and I can't decide between whose and which. Should be which but doesn't quite sound right.
  2. morgana

    morgana Senior Member

    Definitely Which.
    Whose is used for persons (who --> whose, what --> which).
    Natives please correct me if I'm wrong!
  3. **ellie** Senior Member

    Italy, Forlì
    Which because è una "cosa" non "una persona". Hope it is right!
  4. shamblesuk

    shamblesuk Senior Member

    England, English
    Si potrebbe scrivere 'the aim of which is to....'
  5. nmuscatine Senior Member

    English, USA
    "...the subject which aim is to contribute..." non va.

    Per utilizzare "which," si deve dire "...the subject which aims to contribute ..." Qui "which" vuol dire "che," e "aims" e' un verbio.

    PERO, "...the subject whose aim is to contribute..." va benissimo, secondo me. Vuol dire "...l'argomento di cui lo scopo e' di contribuire...". Qui "whose" e' possessivo, e "aim" e' un nome.
  6. You little ripper! Senior Member

    Australian English
    I agree with nmuscatine. It should be....the subject whose aim is to contribute.......
  7. morgana

    morgana Senior Member


    oh my god!!!!
    I'd never ever have imagined that!
    ..you never stop learning.. :p
  8. I agree on "whose." "Whose" indicates ownership -- the "subject" owns the "aim to contribute."

    "Whose car is this?" "It belongs to Carlo."
    "Which of these cars is Carlo's?" "The red one."

    More complicated:
    "The subject, which aims to contribute to the debate on Iraq, is very controversial."

    "The subject, whose aim is to contribute to the debate on Iraq, is very controversial."

    In the first "which" acts like a pronoun and is the subject of the verb "aims." In the second "whose" possesses "aim."

    I don't think I'm being very clear, but maybe the examples will help.
  9. Girino Senior Member

    English, USA
    I disagree slightly with my English speaking friends. I think "which aims to..." is better than "whose aim is to...." because whose refers to ownership by a person, not a thing.

    But this is one of those cases where you if ask 10 people you will get 20 different opinions.
  10. Queva Senior Member

    Yep, I also think that "which aims to" sounds less (pause..omg how do you spell it..akward..no, awkward..) complicated :p but "whose aim is to" is somewhat more emphatic. I think.
    Thanks everyone, I've been really exploiting you in the last few days :)
  11. TrentinaNE

    TrentinaNE Senior Member

    English (American)
    THe original Italian sentence used a verb form, che intende contribuire, and I agree with the suggestion that this works best in English, too: which aims (or seeks) to contribute...

    Also, I would say a "new approach to the subject" rather than "on."


Share This Page