It means that the NUM will have to arrange locally for the union dues to be collected individually.

There are many sentences which are active:

  1. If so, and if we assume that abstract grammatical principles which are universal are part of our biological endowment, then the natural conclusion to reach is that (7) is a principle which is biologically wired into the language faculty, and which thus forms part of our genetic make-up.
  2. Perhaps the first thing to mention is that all the speakers/writers are 'important' people - compare this with the second newspaper story on the strike, below.
  3. If (as Chomsky claims) human beings are biologically endowed with an innate language faculty, an obvious question to ask is what is the nature of the language faculty.

So, why is "for the union dues to be collected" passive?


1 Answer 1


In all your example sentences, the speaker/writer is reaching the conclusion, mentioning a fact, or asking a question.

The union dues (payments from members) are not collecting anything, they are being collected. There are many passive sentences as well as active ones!

I am waiting for a parcel to be delivered.

I have asked to be notified as soon as he arrives.

  • Is the passive used here because "I" is not the logical subject of 'deliver'?
    – Mr. Wang
    Commented Nov 7, 2023 at 9:25
  • The parcel is not delivering anything, the postal service or delivery company are going to deliver it. Commented Nov 7, 2023 at 9:58
  • Is it grammatically correct to use them in the passive voice? Namely,to be reached, to be mentioned, to be asked?
    – Mr. Wang
    Commented Nov 7, 2023 at 11:41
  • Of course it is. Commented Nov 7, 2023 at 11:45
  • I find myself unable to succinctly explain why all of OP's three "infinitive" examples could be validly (albeit it perhaps "awkwardly") replaced by to be reached, to be mentioned, to be asked. But ...arrange locally for the union dues to collect individually doesn't seem like just an "awkward" alternative - it's out-and-out invalid. Commented Nov 7, 2023 at 12:17

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