I read this thread on the usage of the gerund preceded by the possessive pronoun with much interest.
I have another question about the usage of the gerund preceded by the possessive pronoun.
In a test from a textbook I am using, one must choose the correct form of the bracketed word in the following sentence (I have simplified it somewhat):
Company X experimented with its (expand)__ into a new business area.
The given answer is "expansion." To me, this intuitively feels more comfortable than the gerund "expanding."
My question, however, is the following:
Is the gerund also grammatically correct in this sentence?
In the example sentences throughout this thread so far, there are no cases in which the subject of the sentence and the subject of the gerund clause are the same, not to mention cases in which the verb of the gerund clause is intransitive and followed by a preposition.
The monkey seemed to be preoccupied with its prying off the lid of the jar.
Again, this sounds very awkward to me, but I'm not sure if it's incorrect.
I also wondered if there might not be a rule that if a verb has a standard nominalized form (expand -> expansion), it needs to take precedence over the gerund when it is preceded by the genitive case.
Are such matters entirely irrelevant to my question?