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When you say "I was embarrassed by you", is it ever possible for you to mean that "you embarrassed me"? In other words, is it possible to convey the passive voice by "I was embarrassed by you"?

  • your language is a bit perplexing but if I understood your question I say it looks correct. "I was embarrassed by you" will do the job in passive usage. – vickyace Apr 17 '14 at 5:00
  • Couldn't resist. Yeah, it's usage is correct. – Tucker Apr 17 '14 at 5:05
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Yes, it is possible, and using it in passive voice is not so uncommon: "I was embarrassed by how you acted tonight" or "I was embarrassed by what you said yesterday".

  • Are you suggesting that the only salient interpretation of your examples are respectively "How you acted tonight embarrassed me" and "What you said yesterday embarrassed me"? If so, I wonder why they cannot be interpreted as, respectively, "I felt embarrassed by how you acted tonight" or "I felt embarrassed by what you said yesterday". – JK2 Apr 17 '14 at 8:44
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    I'm not suggesting interpretations, but rather showing common usage of passive voice. P.S. Considering that the feeling of embarrassment is a personal and subjective experience, is being embarrassed (by someone) really different than feeling embarrassed by them? What is the difference in meanings of "I was embarrassed by how you acted tonight" and "I felt embarrassed by how you acted tonight"? – Arman H Apr 17 '14 at 8:56
  • Do you think that 'I felt embarrassed by how you acted tonight' means the same thing as does 'How you acted tonight embarrassed me'??? – JK2 Apr 17 '14 at 14:54
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    Yes, I do think that, and I gave you my reasons for it. Care to explain the difference in meaning (not syntax or semantics) between those two? – Arman H Apr 17 '14 at 16:17
  • Well, I don't know, they may mean the same thing, but I think that technically they're not the same syntactically or semantically. "I felt embarrassed..." focuses on my feeling, which is a state of my mind, whereas "Your action embarrassed me" focuses on an event of it embarrassing me, rather than on a state of my mind. – JK2 Apr 18 '14 at 7:43

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