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-   -   The subjunctive (http://forums.tomisimo.org/showthread.php?t=1290)

gatitoverde May 14, 2008 12:39 AM

The subjunctive
 
This is something I read on Yahoo the other day. I believe it was from an EFE article:

- El partido fue suspendido luego de que una mujer policía se disparara fuera del estadio.

Could someone explain to me why the imperfect subjunctive is used?

Rusty May 14, 2008 07:09 AM

The phrase luego de que requires the subjunctive, and it's in the imperfect mood because the action in the main clause took place in the past.

Alfonso May 14, 2008 07:18 AM

Es exacto lo que dice Rusty. El uso del subjuntivo es una exigencia de la cláusula principal. No tiene sentido preguntarse por qué, pues no existe, en este caso, una alternativa en indicativo con distinto significado.
El enfoque para comprender el subjuntivo es estructuralista. La estructura lo exige. Muchas gramáticas lo explican como si el subjuntivo tuviera un significado en sí mismo, como si tuviera que ver con la actitud del hablante, o con la irrealidad del suceso, etc. Pero esto es falso. Frases como ésta lo demuestran.

Luego de que + subjuntivo.
Después de que + subjuntivo.

Tomisimo May 14, 2008 07:19 AM

Good question Gatito.

Use of the imperfect subjunctive as opposed to the the present subjunctive

If the verb in the main clause is in one of the past tenses or the conditional tense (specifically the imperfect indicative, preterit, pluperfect indicative, or conditional) then the imperfect subjunctive is used instead of the present subjunctive.

In this case the verb in the main clause is fue suspendido, requiring the imperfect subjunctive.

The above it true, provided that there is one of the elements that triggers the subjunctive in the sentence.

Conditions that trigger the subjunctive

Perhaps your question in this case is the fact that a gunshot was fired, and that being a concrete happening, why is the subjunctive needed?

The dichotomy between something concrete and something likely to happen is not the only reason the subjunctive is needed.

So what triggers the subjunctive in this case?

Most (all?) of the time-related conjunctions trigger the use of the subjunctive after them. For example: después (de) que, antes (de) que, luego (de) que, cuando, hasta que, mientras etc. You should use the subjunctive after all of these.

EDIT: When I started my post, no one had answered Gatito yet-- You guys sure are fast!

gatitoverde May 14, 2008 07:26 AM

Beautiful. Thank you again, Rusty, and everyone. And if anyone else feels like contributing, I could maybe use a list of similar phrases requiring the subjunctive . . . :o

Qué hermoso. Grácias de nuevo, Rusty, y a todos. Y si alguien se sienta dispuesto a ayudarme en agregar otros ejemplos de frases seguidas por el subjunctivo, no vacile, por favor . . . :p

gatitoverde May 14, 2008 07:30 AM

Exactly what I was thinking, David! I had to quickly go back and edit my post to say and everyone/a todos!

Tomisimo May 14, 2008 07:33 AM

Well, in addition to the time-related conjunctions I wrote above, here's a few more expressions off the top of my head that must be followed by the subjunctive.
  • ojalá
  • con tal que
  • para que
  • acaso
  • quizá
  • tal vez
  • aunque (if the relevant action hasn't occurred yet)
  • a fin de que
  • a menos que
  • por más que

gatitoverde May 14, 2008 07:43 AM

Mmmmmmmmmmmahh! <----kiss . . . Much love! Viel Dank!

poli May 14, 2008 07:43 AM

Please correct me if I'm wrong. I use the subjunctive under the following
circumstance: when the predicate is conditional, the following verb in the sentence is subjunctive.
For example: Iría alli si vayas conmigo.

If this is correct, does the same rule apply with the future tense followed buy the present subjunctive?

Tomisimo May 14, 2008 07:46 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by gatitoverde (Post 8335)
Mmmmmmmmmmmahh! <----kiss . . . Much love! Viel Dank!

¿No es vielen dank?

Quote:

Originally Posted by poli (Post 8336)
Please correct me if I'm wrong. I use the subjunctive under the following
circumstance: when the predicate is conditional, the following verb in the sentence is subjunctive.
For example: Iría alli si vayas conmigo.

If this is correct, does the same rule apply with the future tense followed buy the present subjunctive?

The conditional does trigger the imperfect subjunctive, but in your example it doesn't use the subjunctive, since si (if) is always followed by the indicative never followed by the present subjunctive (but can be followed by the imperfect subjunctive). In any case, some element that requires the subjunctive must be present so that you can use the subjunctive after the conditional. For example Yo iría para que tú fueras.


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