somehow, something which really bugged me

Read this interview of local publisher Fong Hoe Fang by Clarissa Oon in the Straits Times last month, and somehow, something in the second paragraph really bugged me:

A new chapter, The Straits Times, Life! , 21 May 2012, page C6

Oon describes Fong as a ‘sociology graduate from the National University of Singapore [NUS] who had majored in social work’. Not sure if this was an error in writing, editing, or both, because it really doesn’t make sense. Does Oon even realize that Sociology and Social Work aren’t even the same thing? Cos when you’re a Sociology graduate, you would have majored in Sociology!

Perhaps something like ‘sociology graduate … who had also majored in social work’ would have worked better. However, this still sounds a little odd, because if you’d majored in X and Y in university, would you call yourself a ‘graduate of X who had also majored in Y’? I’m pretty sure you wouldn’t! Therefore, I think the best way to phrase it is ‘was a motorcycle-riding graduate from the National University of Singapore who had majored in sociology and social work’!

Incidentally, some time ago, I spoke to this professor, CTC, who is currently lecturing Geography at NUS. He had studied there in the 80s and told me that Arts students had to take two majors (and a minor too, if I recall correctly). One of his majors was English Literature and the amount of books he had to read in a year was terrifying! I guess some things never change!

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1 Response to “somehow, something which really bugged me”


  1. 1 auntielucia Monday, 2 July, 2012 at 4:27 pm

    For a gr8 take on journalism, pse buy the late Nora Ephron’s “I remember nothing” She has a gr8 essay there!


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