2

I searched the Internet to find which of the following is correct:

  • Who are we?
  • Who we are?

And I found that both are used. What is the correct sentence?

  • 4
    Can you share your research with us? As a stand-alone phrase, "Who we are?" is not correct. It can be used as part of a longer sentence, however: "Who we are is irrelevant." So I'm not sure where you saw that both are correct. – WendiKidd Jun 3 '13 at 14:07
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    @WendiKidd "Who we are?" can be correct; for example, if somebody says "I don't know anymore who we are." the reply could be "Who we are? We are a couple who pretend everything is fine." – kiamlaluno Jun 3 '13 at 22:37
7

"Who are we?" is correct.

The general forms of a question in English are:

Single verb: interrogative pronoun (who, what, where, when, why how -- verb -- subject

Two verbs: interrogative pronoun -- helping verb (usually forms of "to be" or "to do") -- subject -- primary verb -- object

Single verb examples:

When is the next train?

Where are the books?

Two verbs:

Why do you think that?

How did Bob find the house?

Note this is different from the standard word order for a declarative sentence, which is: subject -- verb -- object.

Declarative: The book is here.

Interrogative: Where is the book?

Declarative: She is running.

Interrogative: What is she doing?

Etc.

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-1

Who are we? is a question.

"Who we are" is not a question but an introduction to the information that follows. I conclude that it should be followed by a colon. Who we are:

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-3

Who we are can be correct for example when a person/company wants to introduce the values they stand for.

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  • 2
    Welcome to ELL, Paolo, and thank you for your answer. While "Who we are" can be used in the way that you suggest, it would not be followed by a question mark when used in that way. Typically, it would only be used as a heading in a document, and would not have any punctuation. – JavaLatte Apr 10 '17 at 12:35
  • @JavaLatte, the exception to that rule: If someone wrote "Who we are" and you were questioning that usage, you might ask, "Who we are?" – fixer1234 Apr 10 '17 at 19:03

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