IS “WHOM” DOOMED? Megan Garber had an article in the March Atlantic about the future of “whom”. Google’s collection of digitized books shows that the use “whom” has been declining since 1826. Says Garber: “Articles in Time magazine included 3,352 instances of whom in the 1930s, 1,492 in the 1990s, and 902 in the 2000s. Garber concludes: “Whom…is doomed.” One reason that Garber gives for the decline of “whom” is that people are unsure of correct usage and so avoid it. Garber thinks that the most important reason for the decline of “whom” is that informality is increasingly valued in prose, and “whom” is inconsistent with a conversational tone.

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