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Hi. Could we use the following forms (I think we could say they are in certain forms - like countable and uncountable)?

Situation 1:

(cooking a food that contains the following ingredients)

1 tablespoon of brown sugar

1 tablespoon of granulated sugar

(part of cooking instructions)

Put the sugars into the mix and mix thoroughly

Situation 2:

(talking about his/her cultural exposure)

For two years, in XXs, he had exposure to Chinese culture by virtue of living and working there, and previous to that (prior to that and before that - OK?), he had exposure to Japanese culture. Thus (Therefore - OK?) I think we can say he had exposure to two different cultures.

Also, in the Bible, we see the word "vanities" being used (Specifically in Jonah 2:8 in King James Bible). I thought the word "vanity" is uncountable. Could we use that word in plural?
Comments  
Anonymous
(part of cooking instructions)

Put the sugars into the mix and mix thoroughly


This doesn't seem quite right to me. "sugars" is a perfectly good word, but it's most often used in more technical contexts, such as chemistry, biology or nutrition. Here you could say "Put all the sugar...", or, if you want to be absolutely explicit that it's both types, "Put the brown sugar and the granulated sugar..."

The repetition of "mix" is also slightly awkward.
Anonymous
For two years, in XXs, he had exposure to Chinese culture by virtue of living and working there, and previous to that (prior to that and before that - OK?), he had exposure to Japanese culture. Thus (Therefore - OK?) I think we can say he had exposure to two different cultures.

"cultures" is fine.

"prior to that" and "before that" are fine. I prefer these to "previous to that".

"Therefore" is also fine.

I'm not sure what kind of word you intend to substitute for "XXs".
Anonymous
Also, in the Bible, we see the word "vanities" being used (Specifically in Jonah 2:8 in King James Bible). I thought the word "vanity" is uncountable. Could we use that word in plural?

Yes, when referring to several instances of vanity.
Hi. Thank you.

You wrote:


Anonymous



For two years, in XXs, he had exposure to Chinese culture by virtue of living and working there, and previous to that (prior to that and before that - OK?), he had exposure to Japanese culture. Thus (Therefore - OK?) I think we can say he had exposure to two different cultures.



"cultures" is fine.

"prior to that" and "before that" are fine. I prefer these to "previous to that".

"Therefore" is also fine.

I'm not sure what kind of word you intend to substitute for "XXs".

Sorry. I was going to mention that the letters "XX" in "XXs" meant to mean some arbitrary decade like 70s or 80s.

You also wrote:


Anonymous



Also, in the Bible, we see the word "vanities" being used (Specifically in Jonah 2:8 in King James Bible). I thought the word "vanity" is uncountable. Could we use that word in plural?



Yes, when referring to several instances of vanity.

I think, although I reserve my comment by saying according to the limited knowledge in this area of grammar (I think it is grammar we are dealing with), the turning of what usually is an uncountable noun is done by making (categorizing) them into types. For example, For the word "wine," what normally is an uncountable noun can be typed (I am not sure this is the right word for this) into different wines if we meant them as types. (I am not sure I phrased my sentence correctly to mean what I meant to say, though). But you seem to have categorized into instances and I am not familar with the concept of categorizing into instances. I think if we say or write "a discussion", we are, in fact, saying or writing "an instance of discussion." Are we looking at the same idea here, Mr Wordy when you made the above comment (in your response)? I also think for the word "disease," we can make it plural if we think of it as an example, as in "examples".

Also, I would like to say that I believe the word "vanities" appears not just in Jonah 2:8, in the King James Bible.
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Anonymous
Sorry. I was going to mention that the letters "XX" in "XXs" meant to mean some arbitrary decade like 70s or 80s.


In that case, it should be "... in the XXs ...".
Anonymous
I think, although I reserve my comment by saying according to the limited knowledge in this area of grammar (I think it is grammar we are dealing with), the turning of what usually is an uncountable noun is done by making (categorizing) them into types. For example, For the word "wine," what normally is an uncountable noun can be typed (I am not sure this is the right word for this) into different wines if we meant them as types. (I am not sure I phrased my sentence correctly to mean what I meant to say, though). But you seem to have categorized into instances and I am not familar with the concept of categorizing into instances. I think if we say or write "a discussion", we are, in fact, saying or writing "an instance of discussion." Are we looking at the same idea here, Mr Wordy when you made the above comment (in your response)? I also think for the word "disease," we can make it plural if we think of it as an example, as in "examples".

Yes, what you say seems right. Some nouns, such as "wine", become countable when we are referring to different types. Others, such as "discussion", become countable when we are referring to different instances. Although I said "vanities" referred to different instances of vanity, it's possible that these different instances could also be different types (I hope this isn't getting too confusing). For example, one person could be vain about one thing, and another person could be vain about something else -- or the first person could be vain about lots of different things.

In addition to what Mr Wordy said let me give you an example using the word discussion. This should be easy to understand.

I had a very interesting discussion with Mark last night. (this refers to one specific discussion, one instance of it if you will; countable)

Tackling the problem of poverty in the slums will require broad discussion. (no particular discussion is meant here; uncountable)
Thank you, Mr Wordy and Ivanhr, for the help.
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actually, we can use 'sugars' even though sugar is uncountable, but only in specific context.
sugars there means granulated and brown sugar.
another example:
When a waitress asks a customer about what he wants to order, he can say "I want two coffees" or whatever.
It means, the waitress and he know which coffee it is.