Hi,

I would like to know if "where am I here?" is a correct English sentence. Someone in a forum that I'm in said that the sentence has a similar meaning as "why am I here?" but with a slightly different connotation; it questions something more profound than the latter sentence.

I have a hard time believing it. I did some google search to see if it's a phrase or an axiom, but the search ended up with nothing other than some occasional quotes from a song.

English is my third language. Although I'm fluent in it for being educated in the US for a long time, I did not major in the English language. So I cannot counterargue with confidence if someone says that this phrase does exist and has some meaning. They do fail in giving me some proof.

So I would like to see if some expert in the English language can enlighten me regarding this phrase.

Thank you.
DearAnon

The phrase "Where am I here?" is very idiomatic and it is probably best not to use it unless you are fluent

For example..

- I'm going out for a drink. I get on the wrong train. I get off after a few stops and find a bar. The people are friendly, but I find it difficult to talk to them. I know I'm in the wrong place - I should get back on the train. This is a strange part of town. I start to think: "Where am I here?"

In UK English, it might be: "What on earth am I doing here?"

It is a good usage, but only in this special kind of case

Regards, Dave
Hi,

I would like to know if "where am I here?" is a correct English sentence. Someone in a forum that I'm in said that the sentence has a similar meaning as "why am I here?" but with a slightly different connotation; it questions something more profound than the latter sentence.

It doesn't make any sense to me as written. But it would if you add a comma. ie Where am I, here?

The 'here' suggests to me that you know where you are when you are in other places, but not when you are in this particular place.

You could also argue that the 'here' just adds emphasis to the question, since if you say simply 'Where am I?', you are clearly referring to here.

'Why am I here?' can be a simple question, eg You are here because you are waiting for your dinner

or a profound one. eg You are here because a gazillion years ago the Universe was created in some way we do not understand.

Similarly, 'Where am I?' can have both simple and profound answers.

Clive
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Hey, Dave

Thanks for the reply.

I'm the person who posted this question.

I know I'm being very picky, but I was wondering if you could provide me with any literary source that actually uses this phrase? To tell you the truths, I did some google search on this topic since I found the sentence extremely absurd, albeit it being "very idiomatic." The search ended up with nothing substantial. I did get some search results that gave some examples of the phrase in some Indian religious scriptures, but I do not believe such source to be reliable. Such a minimal result from Google makes me doubt if this sentence can be considered "correct" English.

Anyways, it doesn't matter if you could provide me with additional result. I appreciate your response much, and as of time being, I will at least consider that such phrase exists and can be used in a very specific way.

Thanks,

Ruben
AnonymousI would like to know if "where am I here?" is a correct English sentence.
Yes, it is.

If I have been reading and have set down the book without marking the place, the next time I pick up the book and start leafing through the pages to find my place, I say, "Where am I here?" meaning "Where am I in this book?", "Where do I continue reading?" here is optional.

I also say this whenever I've lost my way in a series of steps in a procedure that I'm trying to perform step by step.

"Where was I (here)?" is also frequently used with the same meaning.

There's a slight stess on am in these expressions.

_____________________

Another meaning. A group photo is taken. There are a lot of people in the photo. One member of the group holds a copy of the photo and asks, "Where am I here?", i.e., "Where is the image of me in this photo of so many people?"

In this meaning the stress is on I.

______________________

Another meaning. Suppose a woman complains that her husband makes all the decisions for the family without ever consulting her at all. In telling all this to a friend of hers, she may say, rhetorically, "Where am I here?" meaning, "What role do I have to play?", "In what way are my wishes and opinions represented in this scenario?" (Stress on I again.)

_____________________

In spite of the fact that the sentence is grammatical and meaningful, you might have to wait a long time listening to English speakers before you hear it. It's not exactly a frequently used expression. Emotion: smile

CJ
Dear Ruben

It is a rare and unusual phrase - I had to go through about 25 pages of Google before I found it!

Here it is used by a photographer - I think they are just capturing the mood of the place where they happen to be

http://www.flickr.com/photos/hurricanecourtney/5167749980 /

So, yes, I would say it is a correct sentence - but not often used..

Regards, Dave
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Very interesting situation and I have not met such sentences before. it is hard to say which one is the correct English sentence but I think that the variant "where am I here?" is not very good and we should think about how to change it for another phrase that can be better in this situation. If we are speaking about "why am I here?" I think that it does not have the same meaning as your sentence but has some sense. In any case, you may need some help if you ant to get the professional help. I suppose some services can help you with your issues.