Breaking the who/whom rule in English literature

For a paper I’m planning to write on the breaking of prescriptive rules by literary authors for characterisation purposes, I’m looking for specific examples of the breaking of the who/whom rule. I have several examples of them already, and have occasionally posted them on this blog. But more would be very welcome!

Also, I’d be interested in your thoughts about why Martin Amis, in his recent book Inside Story (2020) bothers to explain the rule for the use of who and whom. In a novel, as well. Why would he have done so? Any suggestions from people who’ve read his book already?

(Image source: Amazon)
This entry was posted in usage features and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink.

1 Response to Breaking the who/whom rule in English literature

  1. John Booth says:

    The above comment should have read: I suspect that what appears as a rule violation is more a result of native speaker preference for a certain position, i.e. subject or object, for ‘who’ or ‘whom’ respectively. Nobody would think to say or, indeed, write anything other than, for instance, ‘Who did you say it was from?’ or ‘Who are you talking to?’ Added to which, along with words such as ‘twice’. ‘whom’ is slowly disappearing from common usage.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s