N2 L1 Reading Discussion

This is a discussion topic for the N2 Lesson 1 reading passages

Read on Bunpro

1 Like

The third reading (about “Lawrence of Arabia”) felt a bit harder than the other two in Lesson 1. What I struggle with the most is keeping track of the topic/who is carrying out the verbs in context. My struggles start in this sentence:


I’m aware there’s an English translation, but I’m trying to confirm it through my own understanding, so below I’ll give my best guess for who performs each verb in the above sentence:

  • 印象に残る:私, the writer of the passage - we can know this based on the previous sentence(s) being about the writer of the passage.
  • 落馬して気を失い残される:アラブ人 - we can know this because it is revealed explicitly within the sentence. Note that in English we may be tempted to think of the “doer” as the one who left the アラブ人 unconscious, but the verb is in the passive voice precisely so we can talk about the someone doing the act of being left unconscious (by someone else). The doer of being left unconscious is the アラブ人.
  • 探せるか探しても:誰か, someone other than the author or the アラブ人 - we can know this because the アラブ人 is marked with を, and obviously the author cannot be the one to search a fictional character in a movie. Furthermore, the アラブ人 cannot search for him/herself.

After this point is where things get funky. After アラブ人 is marked with を, the doer of the first verb after this point (探す) is very clearly 誰か. So I would expect the doer of the rest of these verbs in that clause to also be this same 誰か entity.

But instead, the English translation on BunPro implies that it’s 誰か for 探す and then アラブ人 for the rest of the verbs. How come?

If 探す had been “conjugated” to the passive (探されるか探されても…), then I could see how it could be アラブ人 through and through since the passive allows you to talk about someone receiving actions without switching up whom you’re talking about.

Instead, what we see is that the doer just flip-flops (seemingly) randomly between 誰か and then back to アラブ人 ._.

Any help here would be appreciated.

My previous post is too lengthy and complicated (hence, no response). I can boil down my confusion now that I’ve processed some more.

In the third passage in this reading lesson, the sentence


is translated by BunPro as follows:

The most memorable thing for me was that a mere solitary Arab soldier fell off his mount during the vast night of the desert, lost consciousness and was left behind. Then he goes back the way he came from alone, even though he wasn’t sure if he would be found or if he would be to find his way back home.

I was wondering if someone could help me understand how we know that the doer of 帰ってくる and 戻って行く is the アラブ人 despite the doer of 探す being someone other than the author or the アラブ人?

Just wanted to say I really like these grammar readings. They reinforce in context the particular items I’m studying at the moment and deepen my understanding. Thanks!