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make (a/the) case that Options
maltliquor87
Posted: Thursday, September 20, 2018 3:42:37 PM

Rank: Advanced Member

Joined: 11/29/2017
Posts: 135
Neurons: 55,398
Location: Moscow, Moscow, Russia
Hello, dear forum members.

Below is an entry from thefreedictionary.com. (https://idioms.thefreedictionary.com/make+a+case+that)

Quote:
make a case that
To state the reasons why something should be done or is or should be the case.
"You could certainly make a case that alcohol is worse than marijuana, but I doubt that lawmakers will agree with you."


Is it grammatically correct to use the definite article instead? To my recollection, I've often heard people say "make the case that". Could you, please, tell me if there's any difference?
FounDit
Posted: Thursday, September 20, 2018 3:50:04 PM

Rank: Advanced Member

Joined: 9/19/2011
Posts: 9,549
Neurons: 50,694
maltliquor87 wrote:
Hello, dear forum members.

Below is an entry from thefreedictionary.com. (https://idioms.thefreedictionary.com/make+a+case+that)

Quote:
make a case that
To state the reasons why something should be done or is or should be the case.
"You could certainly make a case that alcohol is worse than marijuana, but I doubt that lawmakers will agree with you."


Is it grammatically correct to use the definite article instead? To my recollection, I've often heard people say "make the case that". Could you, please, tell me if there's any difference?


Both will work. In "making a case" the emphasis in on the making of a case, where "making the case" would refer specifically to that particular topic. The emphasis shifts to the topic rather than the making of a case. It's only a very slight distinction most people would not make note of.


We should look to the past to learn from it, not destroy our future because of it — FounDit
maltliquor87
Posted: Thursday, September 20, 2018 3:51:33 PM

Rank: Advanced Member

Joined: 11/29/2017
Posts: 135
Neurons: 55,398
Location: Moscow, Moscow, Russia
Thanks, FounDit
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