Why did they use article in this sentence below?

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The factory is now a workers' cooperative.

Why did they use an article before the word (workers)? Which is plural? Does the article a refer to workers, plural, or refer to cooperative?

  • I think you've answered your own question. :) How could it refer to workers', which is plural? Also compare: "She accidentally went into a men's washroom." – Luke Sawczak Jun 23 '17 at 15:09
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    The article marks (belongs with) the noun cooperative, not with the modifier workers'. – P. E. Dant Reinstate Monica Jun 23 '17 at 18:22

"workers'" is plural possessive. It is saying that the cooperative belongs to many workers. The "workers' cooperative" is a single thing and requires the article 'a'.

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