Grammar Journalism – 2009-2010
Objective and Subjective Case for Pronouns • Pronoun Case is really a very simple matter. There are three cases. • Subjective case: pronouns used as subject. • Objective case: pronouns used as objects of verbs or prepositions. • Possessive case: pronouns which express ownership.
Subject or Object 1. If the pronoun is acting as a subject, use the subjective case. If it is acting as an object, use the objective case. • The girl met him at the game. • Him - Object • She was late. • She – Subject • She made him angry. • She – Subject • Him - Object
Compound Structures 2. In compound structures, where there are two pronouns or a noun and a pronoun, drop the other noun for a moment. Then you can see which case you want. • Not: Bob and me travel a good deal.(Would you say, "me travel"?) • Not: He gave the flowers to Jane and I.(Would you say, "he gave the flowers to I"?) • Not: Us men like the coach.(Would you say, "us like the coach"?)
Comparisons 3. In comparisons add what should be the rest of the sentence. Comparisons usually follow than or as: • He is taller than I (am tall). • This helps you as much as (it helps) me. • She is as noisy as I (am). Comparisons are really shorthand sentences which usually omit words, such as those in the parentheses in the sentences above. If you complete the comparison in your head, you can choose the correct case for the pronoun. • Not: He is taller than me.(Would you say, "than me am tall"?) This resource was written by Purdue OWL.
Formal Writing 4. In formal and semiformal writing: Use the subjective form after a form of the verb to be. Formal: It is I. Informal: It is me.
Subjective/Objective Pronouns 1 • The English teacher returned the exams to Tamara and me/I. • Henry's brother is much taller than he/him. • We/Us workaholics hope to relax and have fun when we finally take a vacation. • Mark told me that the two players who won the most sets on Friday were Tucker and he/him. • Her/She beating the odds and recovering completely was nothing short of a miracle.
Subjective/Objective Pronouns 2 • I will ask my mother and she/her if we can go to the movies. • You can believe Jiro and I/me. • Did anyone tell Estrella and she/her that the time for the concert has changed? • I met Sue and he/him at the National Museum of African Art. • Will you take we/us to the Cinco de Mayo festival?
Subjective/Objective Pronouns 3 • Do you remember Ella and they/them? • I was expecting Harold and she/her to be here by now. • You could help we/us tomorrow. • I recognized you and them/they. • Did she mean Nan or me/I?
Subjective/Objective Pronouns 4 • Jo and she/her save dimes and pennies. • We/Us girls caught a few dogfish. • The boys and we/us swam in the deep water. • Are her/she and me/I partners? • We and them/they met in the finals
Subjective/Objective Pronouns 5 • It must have been he/him and Kane. • A few of we/us decided to fish there. • Francine and I/me could see the fish. • I quickly called Myra and her/she. • “You and she/her should drop your hooks here!” I yelled.