1

To put or not to put "The"...

In my made up examples below, do I keep the "The" or not? Why? Does it even make a difference?

  1. The results speak to the organization the infrastructure lacks.

  2. The results speak to the lack of organization the infrastructure has.

in #2 I would lean towards leaving "The" out because I believe it would sound more native, but not sure why.

Leaving "The" out in #1 would sound a little odd to my ear and as if something's missing.

1

You need the "the" in both. Also, you should use "that" in both.

  1. The results speak to the organization the infrastructure lacks.

First off, this needs the "the" before organization. This is referring to a specific thing that the infrastructure lacks and needs the definite article ("the") there.

An important note: this should have a "that" after organization. This makes the sentence structure a lot clearer, according to my instincts in native American English. Without it, it looks a lot like two sentences you forgot to put a period between. Thus, the correct version of the sentence would be:

The results speak to the organization that the infrastructure lacks.

On to the second sentence:

  1. The results speak to the lack of organization the infrastructure has.

This also needs the definite article. It's basically the same sentence with a different verb and "lack of" added, and follows the same reasoning. It also needs a "that", and, if you want this same exact wording (which I don't really recommend), the correct version would be:

The results speak to the lack of organization that the infrastructure has.

What I really recommend that has the exact same meaning would be:

The results speak to the infrastructure's lack of organization.

  • Would you recommend, "The results speak to the infrastructure's lack of organization?" – Bahram Jul 24 at 6:18
  • @Bahram That's perfectly valid and clear. – Valkor Jul 24 at 7:57
  • @Bahram yup, that's about the best you could get with that wording :-) – Stormblessed Jul 24 at 13:33
  • How can I improve this (seeing as it has a DV)? – Stormblessed Aug 19 at 21:13

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