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As a result of the Black Death, the plague that afflicted

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As a result of the Black Death, the plague that afflicted [#permalink] New post 24 Jun 2011, 04:18
00:00
A
B
C
D
E

Difficulty:

  5% (low)

Question Stats:

67% (01:37) correct 33% (00:43) wrong based on 12 sessions
As a result of the Black Death, the plague that afflicted Europe in 1348-49, as many as half the population died and less than half the workforce remained in certain cities.

a- as many as half the population died and less than half the work force remained

b- as much as half the population died and fewer than half the work force remained

c- as many as half the people died and less than that remained in the work force

d- as much as half the population died and less than half the work force remained

e- as many as half the population and less than half the work force died or remained


i see the logic why Force (like using force is not countable) but here it's a work force.

can't i say fewer american navy forces? or fewer than half the forces of the police?

thank you in advance
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Re: y work force is not countable [#permalink] New post 24 Jun 2011, 04:36
Population and workforce are non-countable nouns, so the answer is D. Workforce and Population fall in the category of non-countable nouns even while conveying the idea of more than one person. Another few examples that I can think of are "bevy, class, team" etc.

can't i say fewer american navy forces? or fewer than half the forces of the police?

No, the construction is awkward and wrong.
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Re: y work force is not countable [#permalink] New post 24 Jun 2011, 05:00
how come team is not countable?
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Re: y work force is not countable [#permalink] New post 24 Jun 2011, 05:05
Actually, it's all about context. These contexts are based on the subtle nuances of English.

I have a great news : our team has won the match - Singular noun (apparently non-countable)
A team of students went for the expedition (Singular noun with of students)
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Re: y work force is not countable [#permalink] New post 24 Jun 2011, 05:27
dimri10 wrote:
how come team is not countable?


Please look for some grammar lesson in:
Collective Nouns.

I personally like this grammar book:
gmat-grammar-ultimate-by-gmat-club-102387.html#p795521
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Re: y work force is not countable [#permalink] New post 24 Jun 2011, 05:30
from wikitinary:

force (countable and uncountable; plural forces)

Wikipedia has an article on:
Force
1.(countable) Anything that is able to make a big change in a person or thing.
2.(countable, physics) A physical quantity that denotes ability to push, pull, twist or accelerate a body which is measured in a unit dimensioned in mass × distance/time² (ML/T²): SI: newton (N); CGS: dyne (dyn)
3.(countable) A group that aims to attack, control, or constrain.
police force
4.(uncountable) The ability to attack, control, or constrain.
show of force
5.(countable) A magic trick in which the outcome is known to the magician beforehand, especially one involving the apparent free choice of a card by another person.
6.A fictional semi-sentient phenomenon that certain individuals can call upon for assistance as in in the Star Wars stories. See also Force.  [quotations ▼]
May the force be with you.
7.(law) Legal validity.  [quotations ▼]
The law will come into force in January.
8.(law) Either unlawful violence, as in a "forced entry", or lawful compulsion.
[edit] Usage notes

Last edited by dimri10 on 24 Jun 2011, 05:42, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: y work force is not countable [#permalink] New post 24 Jun 2011, 05:33
Mate, I think you're mixing up force with workforce :), or maybe I'm wrong. Workforce is a group of individuals (like a team), merely containing the word "force" as a part of itself does not introduce any resemblance to "force" per Se .
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Re: y work force is not countable [#permalink] New post 24 Jun 2011, 06:29
i marked sections 3-4
ut says:police force-countable
Re: y work force is not countable   [#permalink] 24 Jun 2011, 06:29
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