+0
Hi there,

I am from an asian country (korea) and Korean doesn't distinguish countable or uncountable nouns so I have some problem with this concept even though I have been living in english speaking country for 10 years.

Now the word "lack" according to the online Longman dictionary is an uncountable noun, as well as a singular noun.

But we usually say "a lack of quality" or "a lack of resources".

Now we know for sure we never put "a" in front of "water" because "water" is an uncountable noun, as in "furniture" or "stuff".

So how is it that word "lack" can have an indefinite article in front of it?

Does it mean that the English language lacks logic inherently?

Thanks.
1 2
Comments  
Hi,

I don't see why you can't count lacks.

He has a lack of maturity. He has a lack of money. He has a lack of intelligence. That's three lacks.

Best wishes, Clive
Hi Clive

I was taught that 'lack' is an uncountable noun. However, in my country, we learn BrE, so could it be a case of BrE vs AmE?

Best wishes

YL
Site Hint: Check out our list of pronunciation videos.
As I understand. it also can be uncontable: "We didn't implement all the features due to lack of time"

And in most cases only one usage is possible — either coutable or not.
Ant_222As I understand. it also can be uncontable: "We didn't implement all the features due to lack of time"

And in most cases only one usage is possible — either coutable or not.
I would, without doubt, write that as "due to a lack of time."

Perhaps it is American/British.

(I think Clive was having a bit of fun - I don't think he would say "he has three lacks.")
GG: what about these:

Death is lack of life
Vacuum is lack of air

I'd certainly use them without an article...
Teachers: We supply a list of EFL job vacancies
Death is the absense of life.

A vacuum is an abense of air.

I wouldn't say either of them the way you have it.
Grammar GeekI would, without doubt, write that as "due to a lack of time."
Maybe you would but either way is good.
Anonymouswe know for sure we never put "a" in front of "water"
Yes you can: I'll have a beer; and I'll have a water.
GG:

Wow, now I am at a loss...

Zero article:
«Death is lack of life, illness lack of health, poverty lack of wealth, and ignorance lack of knowledge.» — Sanderson Beck, Middle East and Africa, 1875.

With "a":
«Death is a lack of life.» — See Carl Schmitt, “The Visibility of the Church: A Scholastic Consideration,” Appendix to Carl Schmitt, Roman Catholicism and Political Form, tr. and annotated by G. L. Ulmen (Westport, Conn. and London: Greenwood Press, 1996), p. 56.

How do authors decide? How do you decide?
Students: Are you brave enough to let our tutors analyse your pronunciation?
Show more