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Does "demanded that I make him" refer to "demanded that I make way for him/let him do what he wants?

 
 
Reply Wed 2 Sep, 2015 10:36 pm

Context:

Without knowing how I would proceed, I at once found myself
interceding on the woman's behalf. As my adrenaline rose, and her
assailant's attention turned my way, it occurred to me that his
English might be terrible or nonexistent. The mere effort to under-
stand me could be made so costly that it might prove a near-total
diversion. The inability to make my intentions clear would also
serve to forestall actual conflict. Had we shared a common language
our encounter would have almost certainly come to blows within
moments, as I would have thought of nothing more clever than to
demand that he let the woman go, and he, to save face, would have
demanded that I make him. Since he had at least two friends that I could see (and several fans), my evening would probably have ended
very badly. Thus, my goal, as I saw it, was to remain unintelligible,
without antagonizing any of the assembled hooligans, long enough
for the young woman to get away.

--The End of Faith
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Type: Question • Score: 4 • Views: 669 • Replies: 11
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View best answer, chosen by oristarA
PUNKEY
 
  1  
Reply Thu 3 Sep, 2015 05:51 am
short meaning:

(I would) demand that he let the woman go, and he would have
demanded that I make him (let her go).

0 Replies
 
McTag
 
  1  
Reply Thu 3 Sep, 2015 06:28 am

Hey OristarA, sometimes these grammar questiona don't come up in the Grammar or English forums, and that, I suppose, is because you don't tag them accordingly.
That's why some of your posts don't get answered (by anyone interested in these forums).
So you could try always adding a tag.
Punkey is correct here, of course, so no further comment from me.

Or maybe just the one:
"demanded that I make him (do something)" means "demanded that I compel him (to do something)". It's an invitation to take physical action, maybe even start a fight.
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oristarA
 
  1  
Reply Thu 3 Sep, 2015 07:23 am
Oops. I'm sorry that I've failed to get you both.
The author says "and he, to save face, would have demanded that I make him." I failed to get what the author says and I also failed to get your explanations.
The problem might be that I don't know what the word "demand" means there. Does it mean "request urgently and forcefully"?
McTag
 
  1  
Reply Thu 3 Sep, 2015 09:11 am
@oristarA,

yes.
oristarA
 
  1  
Reply Thu 3 Sep, 2015 11:01 am
@McTag,
McTag wrote:


yes.


So that is hard for me to understand "Had we shared a common language our encounter would have almost certainly come to blows within moments, as I would have thought of nothing more clever than to demand that he let the woman go, and he, to save face, would have
demanded that I make him."


Does it mean "if we shared a common language our encounter would have almost certainly become fighting each other immediately, because I would would have thought of nothing more clever than to demand that he let the woman go, and he, for his dignity/to save his face, would demand me to get lost"?



Tes yeux noirs
 
  1  
Reply Thu 3 Sep, 2015 11:27 am
@oristarA,
Quote:
he, to save face, would have demanded that I make him."

He, to save face, would have demanded that I make him let her go. To "make" someone do something is to force or compel them to do it, either physically or by some other means.

McTag
 
  1  
Reply Thu 3 Sep, 2015 01:26 pm
@oristarA,

Yes, although "make me" does not mean "get lost".
"Make me" is a physical challenge.
0 Replies
 
Tes yeux noirs
 
  2  
Reply Thu 3 Sep, 2015 02:08 pm
When I was a kid "gonna make me?" was a challenge that meant "butt out unless you are tough enough to force me, and if you try I will fight you".
0 Replies
 
oristarA
 
  1  
Reply Thu 3 Sep, 2015 09:57 pm
@Tes yeux noirs,
Tes yeux noirs wrote:

Quote:
he, to save face, would have demanded that I make him."

He, to save face, would have demanded that I make him let her go. To "make" someone do something is to force or compel them to do it, either physically or by some other means.



"request urgently and forcefully that I make him do something"?
Sorry I am still unable to get a crystal clear picture of this. There seems to be something that I cannot get well.
Because it is "I" who automatically intervened in his business; he didn't request me to do this intervention.
McTag
  Selected Answer
 
  2  
Reply Fri 4 Sep, 2015 02:58 am
@oristarA,

The man was attacking this woman. He was "her assailant."
The writer tried to make him stop.
He refused, and issued a challenge: "Make me"
He resented the interference.
They did not have a common language, in which to have an argument.
So there was a risk of a fight breaking out.
oristarA
 
  1  
Reply Fri 4 Sep, 2015 05:19 am
@McTag,
Swell.
0 Replies
 
 

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