1)Unless two or more members object to him joining the club , we shall have to accept the application for membership.

My book said him must be replaced by her/his because gerund is followed by possessive adjective. But in this case object to act as a verb and after verb objective case should be used which is him.

please clarify this doubt.

1 Answer 1


Either way is fine, actually:

Unless two or more members object to his joining the club

Unless two or more members object to him joining the club

Some people see the first as "more correct", but this simply isn't true anymore. Because of this, though, it's preferred in formal writng.

Here's a source on this: https://jakubmarian.com/his-doing-vs-him-doing-possessives-and-gerunds-in-english/

  • Robert W. is right to say that either way is fine in English spoken today. ... A note on your reasoning though: When you say that the pronoun should be "him" because "him" is the objective case required by the verb "object to", that isn't quite right according to the "grammar police" (who write the textbooks). The object of the verb "object to" is actually "joining", to be specific, "his joining". So this is why your book gives the "correct" sentence as "... object to his joining ...". Sorry this is so confusing because of the verb "object" being the same as the grammar term "object".
    – Lorel C.
    Commented Feb 2, 2019 at 19:20

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