Anonymous:
May I ask for your help please?

The sentence below is a question from 'Eiken' (Official English Proficiency Test in Japan) and I'm wondering if this sentence is grammatically correct.

"What does the author of the passage suggest is demonstrated by the way the Mosuo raise their children?"

I can understand they tried to combine these two sentences.

*What does the author of the passage suggest? + Which is demonstrated by the Mosuo raise their children. But can we omit 'Which'? I would be happy if you give me some advice.

Thank you for your help in advance!
AnonymousI can understand they tried to combine these two sentences.
*What does the author of the passage suggest? + Which is demonstrated by the Mosuo raise their children.
The original sentence is correct, but this formulation is not really how the sentence is constructed.

The statement form is:

The author of the passage suggests (that) (something) is demonstrated by the way the Mosuo raise their children.

When transformed into a question,

1. (something), i.e., the thing being questioned, becomes "What?" at the beginning,
2. a form of do is added to the author of the passage suggests

to create the author of the passage does suggest, and then
3. subject-verb inversion applies
to create does the author of the passage suggest.

This yields the original question

What does the author of the passage suggest is demonstrated by ...?
________________________

By these transfomations, a clause which was originally the main clause appears to be parenthetical. You can add many kinds of "parenthetical" clauses like this.

What (do you think) is demonstated by the way the Mosuo raise their children?
What (does the author believe) is demonstrated ...?
What (did the critics deny) is demonstrated ...?

These grammatical patterns all come about from the corresponding statement forms through the same processes described above.

You think (that) (something) is demonstrated ...
The author believes (that) (something) is demonstrated ...
The critics denied (that) (something) is demonstrated ...
____________

Note that the word "that", if it exists in the statement form, must be omitted in the question form. That is, you cannot have

*What do you think that is demonstrated by the way the Mosuo raise their children?

CJ
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