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Nude vs. In the Nude

Mike-Kaye

To my mind the 'in the' part preceding nude is redundant. Is the 'in the' part used to pad the word count?

Also are 'nude' and 'naked' synonyms when referring to people without clothing?

Switch Blayde

@Mike-Kaye

I found this at: https://english.stackexchange.com/questions/413193/what-is-the-difference-in-the-nude-vs-nude/413205

I have no idea what it means.
______________________________________________________________

The two sentences have the same meaning, but the grammar is different.

I caught them watching TV in the nude.

The adjective "nude" is here a fused determiner head in the preposition phrase "in the nude" -- an idiom meaning "naked". Indirectly then, "nude" is a kind of predicative adjunct (or complement) with "them" as predicand.

I caught them watching TV nude.

Again, "nude" is an adjective, though here more clearly functioning as a predicative adjunct with the object "them" as predicand.

Replies:   Ross at Play
Switch Blayde

@Mike-Kaye

Also are 'nude' and 'naked' synonyms when referring to people without clothing?


As to this question, there was a link at the other site that took me here: https://www.quora.com/What-is-the-difference-between-naked-and-nude-if-any

Depending on your social or cultural environment, there are different connotations to the words "naked" and "nude". These connotations are not always present, but overall I would say these are the general differences:

"Naked" means something akin to: bare, stripped, exposed, vulnerable or inadequate. Something described as naked is often that way involuntarily.

"Nude" means uncovered, unadorned, unashamed, comfortable, pure, purposeful. It's much more common to refer to voluntary and comfortable nudity by describing someone as nude.

Ross at Play

@Switch Blayde

I have no idea what it means.

That's understandable. I will attempt to translate from grammarian into human for you. :-)

The adjective "nude" is here a fused determiner head in the preposition phrase "in the nude"

I've never seen the term "fused" before.
"In the nude" is a prepositional phrase. The preposition is "in", and the head is "the nude". I think the expression means that the determiner, "the", has been fused to the adjective, "nude", to create the head of the phrase.

Indirectly then, "nude" is a kind of predicative adjunct (or complement) with "them" as predicand.

A predicate exists, I think, when one thing is equated to another in some way. They are very common, perhaps always, when the be-verb is used. For example, "He is happy". The subject of the verb (or predicand) is "He". The object of the verb (the adjunct or complement) is "happy".
Their explanation is saying that "them" is indirectly the subject of a clause, "[they are] in the nude".
Not all objects of verbs are predicates. My guess is that the list of verbs that do have predicates is, not coincidentally, probably almost identical to the verbs which you watch out for as likely to indicate telling, for example, "He feels happy".
I am not certain, but I think predicates in English can only appear after the subject they are beings equated to.

Again, "nude" is an adjective, though here more clearly functioning as a predicative adjunct with the object "them" as predicand.

This is saying that "nude" is behaving like a predicate, it is being equated to "them", but the adjective is not connected to noun by a verb, instead, it is an adjunct placed next to, or soon after, the noun with nothing explicitly connecting them.

Ernest Bywater

I would just use the word nude by itself, except where the situation in the scene would have the nudity as a real surprise to the character - then I'd have it as in the nude..

Examples:

They were down the swimming hole on the river swimming nude.

He walked into the bank's boardroom to deliver his report, and found the entire board sitting around the table in the nude.

Different levels of expectation in the scene until the final words, so the inclusion of in the is technically redundant today it adds to the surprise / shock factor.

Replies:   Ross at Play  Mike-Kaye
Ross at Play
Updated:

@Ernest Bywater

Examples:

I agree with your examples.
For the same reasons, I would consider naked as an alternative to in the nude in the second example, but not as an alternative to nude in the first example.

Ernest Bywater

I see the usage difference like some people from the US South see the difference between naked and nekkid, or so they claim.

Replies:   PotomacBob
Ernest Bywater
Updated:

I kind of see it as a variance in the situation.

Nude = without any clothes

In the nude = without any clothes in a situation where you would expect them to be clothed.

Naked = involves a large amount of being defenceless and may be without clothes, semi dressed, or fully dressed - - depends on the situation.

...........

being caught in your underwear when armed men invade your house you're not nude, but you'd feel naked due to being defenceless.

typo edit

Ross at Play
Updated:

In the Nude

Isn't that a song by Glenn Miller?

Mike-Kaye

@Ernest Bywater

Different levels of expectation in the scene until the final words, so the inclusion of in the is technically redundant today it adds to the surprise / shock factor.


Many thanks. Your examples show why one would use the technically redundant in the.

In my as yet incomplete story, my MC, Z, is very comfortable nude. Nudity has no shock value. The words in the are truly redundant.

Example: Z is hired by a couple. Upon entering their apartment, Z notices that the wife is nude but is more impressed by their huge picture window. Nudity is not shocking. It's not even strange, it's comfortable.

Replies:   REP  Ross at Play
REP

@Mike-Kaye

Nudity has no shock value.


Nudity has no shock value in your story for that is how you are treating people appearing in front of others without clothing.

However in many societies, nudity is socially unacceptable. In such a society, people confronting others who are without clothing would be very shocking. As hard as it is to believe, there are still a few people around who believe it is wrong for a man and wife to appear nude in front of each other in the privacy of their bedroom.

.

Ross at Play

@Mike-Kaye

Your examples show why one would use the technically redundant in the.

FYI, that something's redundant does not necessarily mean it can be deleted without changing meaning.
This is an example of a principle that exists in many various ways: the use of words that are not essential tends to have a nuance of adding emphasis. In this case, the added implication is that 'in the nude' is more shocking that simply 'nude'.
The same thing applies to the use of full words instead of a potential contraction. 'It is important' is more important than 'It's important'.
In a similar vein, the shifting of words to an earlier position within a sentence tends to give those words added prominence.

While I strongly favour writing that expresses the same meaning in less words, it require care not to lose subtle differences in meaning when attempting that.

awnlee jawking

@Ross at Play

FYI, that something's redundant does not necessarily mean it can be deleted without changing meaning.


Translated: that something's redundant does not necessarily mean it's redundant.

AJ

Replies:   Crumbly Writer
Ernest Bywater

As someone who use contractions at almost every opportunity there are still times when I don't use contractions to add emphasis, but then I usually make sure they know I emphasising some thing by saying it is important as against it's important.

Replies:   Crumbly Writer
richardshagrin

Trying to think of other "in the" phrases. In the mood at least rhymes with in the nude. If you are in the mood you probably aren't moody. They also rhyme with rude and crude. And food. And sometimes prude. As far as I know there is not similar word for them like naked for nude. Dude.

awnlee jawking
Updated:

@richardshagrin

"You are news" versus "You are in the news"?

Also 'pink' v 'in the pink' ;)

AJ

Ross at Play

@richardshagrin

They also rhyme with rude and crude. And food. And sometimes prude. As far as I know there is not similar word for them like naked

Surely you can find some sort of word play for us using the rhyming of naked to both wicked and crooked.

Replies:   Crumbly Writer
awnlee jawking

@richardshagrin

'wrong' versus 'in the wrong'

AJ

Crumbly Writer

@Ross at Play

This is an example of a principle that exists in many various ways: the use of words that are not essential tends to have a nuance of adding emphasis. In this case, the added implication is that 'in the nude' is more shocking that simply 'nude'.

While I agree with your grammatical analysis of the phrase, I disagree with your conclusion. While "in the nude" might indicate an element of shock, it's largely a 'passive' phrase, adding unnecessary details which distances the reader from the act, thus "in the nude" is a way of making the sentence itself less shocking, not more (i.e. it's very slightly more family friendly than "nude").

My advice for authors, avoid the phrase "in the nude" to make the scene stronger and more dynamic, introduce "in the nude" if you want the scene to seem more natural and not shocking.

It's not so much the grammar as it is the presentation. Generally, round-about descriptions are more passive than active sentences.

Replies:   Ross at Play
Crumbly Writer

@awnlee jawking

Translated: that something's redundant does not necessarily mean it's redundant.

Sometimes there's a reason for the extra phrasing: whether it's useful or not in an entirely different question.

Crumbly Writer

@Ernest Bywater

As someone who use contractions at almost every opportunity there are still times when I don't use contractions to add emphasis, but then I usually make sure they know I emphasising some thing by saying it is important as against it's important.

I don't really see much difference between the two (other than stretching out the pacing of the sentence). However, I find it's often useful to break up a long string of contractions, so in that case, I'd expand the more dramatic moments by dropping the usual contractions for largely the same reason, because the sentence will stand out more.

Replies:   helmut_meukel
Crumbly Writer

@Ross at Play

Surely you can find some sort of word play for us using the rhyming of naked to both wicked and crooked.

You only notice you're crooked when you nekkit! (It don't rhyme, but it's a truer analysis.)

oyster50

I heard that 'nude' meant 'unclothed', while 'naked', especially when colloquialized as 'nekkid' means you're up to something involving your nekkididity.

Ross at Play

@Crumbly Writer

introduce "in the nude" if you want the scene to seem more natural and not shocking.

We'll have to agree to disagree on that one.

Generally, round-about descriptions are more passive

I think we both made statements that overgeneralize things. Yes, round-about tends to be more passive, but with many expressions adding an extra word adds emphasis.

Replies:   Crumbly Writer
helmut_meukel

@Crumbly Writer

As someone who use contractions at almost every opportunity there are still times when I don't use contractions to add emphasis, but then I usually make sure they know I emphasising some thing by saying it is important as against it's important.

I don't really see much difference between the two (other than stretching out the pacing of the sentence).


CW, you lost something by quoting Ernest. You are right there is no much difference in the quoted text, but in the original text Ernest emphasised "is" (bold). (this got somehow lost in the quoting process).

This is how Ernest wrote it:

[...], but then I usually make sure they know I emphasising some thing by saying it is important as against it's important.


HM.

PotomacBob

@Ernest Bywater

Can you name one Southerner who makes that claim?

Replies:   Ernest Bywater
Ernest Bywater

@PotomacBob

Can you name one Southerner who makes that claim?


I will when I find the time to go back through me SoL history. I've seen it in a number of stories on SoL by 2 authors who claim to be from the south and they explain the difference in the stories.

Found one quikly:

We made small talk during the very delicious meal, and I found that Carin did normally run around naked; no that's not right, she was nude most of the time. I'm sure everyone knows the rules for nude, naked, and nekkid. Hers was simple; nude is unclothed, naked is she is planning something but is not quite ready to spring it on you, and then nekkid is look out; you're in for some real fun now! As I thought about this, I savored the lovely meal, and I felt that I could certainly live with this kind of life. Maybe I needed to settle down some and not do so much traveling around the country.

http://storiesonline.net/s/10740:159495

Who are You by Barneyr - chap 9

GMBusman in Whipple Island

http://storiesonline.net/s/12377

Sarah and I had always used the term "nekkid." Some comedian said, "'Naked' meant you weren't wearing any clothes while 'nekkid' meant you weren't wearing clothes, and you were up to something!" Damned, and damned again! I had hoped to spend the time here getting up to lots of things with Sarah.

And there's another I can't find right now.

Replies:   PotomacBob  PotomacBob
PotomacBob

@Ernest Bywater

All those examples are fictional. Meaning not real.

Ernest Bywater

@PotomacBob

All those examples are fictional. Meaning not real.


Are you saying the authors who wrote them don't exist? The authors are, to the best of my knowledge, from the South, and they claim it's a Southern attitude. I've no reason to doubt them, because I've heard that same explanation from a number of Southern born authors. If you don't like it, go argue with them.

Replies:   PotomacBob
PotomacBob

@Ernest Bywater

I looked up "nekkid" in the Dictionary of American Regional English (DARE). It cites uses in most of the U.S. states from Maine to California, Florida to Arizona, with the fewest in northern states such as Montana, Nebraska, North and South Dakota, with a lot of uses in New England and the South. In most cases the usage is either a synonym for (or just the way they pronounce) naked. In Texas, however, it says "nekkid" often means unbranded cattle. And, for food, it means undiluted, such as "nekkid coffee" (without milk), "nekkid Coke" (without ice) and "nekkid tea" (without lemon). One quote from Mississippi: "I don't need no razor. My nekkid hands will do." (It doesn't explain what that means, and I don't understand it.) It did not mention examples of naked meaning unprotected while nude means unclothed. Nor did it mention nekkid meaning unclothed and up to no good. DARE was published by Harvard University Press.

Replies:   Crumbly Writer
Ross at Play

A comment on an unrelated 'in the ...' expression.

I came across a sentence in an Economist article which ended with this:

... may restrict their scope for growth in future.

I know 'in future' exists as an expression, but this only sounds correct to me if 'in the future' is used instead.
Do others agree with that?
Can anyone explain why that would be so?

PotomacBob

@Ross at Play

The sentence, without the "the," sounds downright unAmerican.

Crumbly Writer

@Ross at Play

I think we both made statements that overgeneralize things. Yes, round-about tends to be more passive, but with many expressions adding an extra word adds emphasis.

Adding an extra word or two isn't the problem, what is is when the extra words distance the reader from the action. If you want to shock, I'd think "Nude" or "Naked" would be more shocking than "without clothing" or "in the nude". It's the fact that they don't have anything on that's shocking, and the faster the delivery, the more dramatic. After all, that's the reason why most famous curses dealing with something "dirty" are all four letters. Short and sweet is more shocking than detailed and overwrought.

Replies:   awnlee jawking
Ross at Play

@PotomacBob

Re this sentence: ... may restrict their scope for growth in future.
Your comment: The sentence, without the "the," sounds downright unAmerican.

The Oxford Dictionary agrees with that. :-)
I found this description as an idiomatic use of "future" (with slight reformating by me).

in future (British English)
in the future (North American English)
Meaning: from now on
Examples:
Please be more careful in future.
In future, make sure the door is never left unlocked.

Still, BrE versus AmE preferences do not explain my discomfort with their sentence. I'm an Australia, I speak British English, and I'd be comfortable both of OxD's example sentences.

I note that both of their examples are 'imperative' statements, rather than 'declarative'. They both issue an instruction, not make a statement.

Can anyone who uses BrE think of an example of a declarative sentence for which they'd be comfortable using "in future"?
Does anyone have a monster-sized British dictionary with more details about the situations in which this idiom is used?

* * *

Bob, please forgive me for being pedantic, but your post contained something I would never do. I always use a hyphen to connect any prefix to a proper noun. I do not use extra hyphens inside multi-word proper nouns, e.g. pre-Civil War, and I still do the same for compound adjectives before nouns. I do the same when the root "word" begins with a numeral, e.g. pre-1970s.

Replies:   awnlee jawking
Crumbly Writer

@PotomacBob

All those examples are fictional. Meaning not real.

This is a fictional story site. Hell, even our "True Stories" are virtually all fictitious! Do you want someone to come up with biographical examples on the fly?

Crumbly Writer

@PotomacBob

My nekkid hands will do.

It means he shaves with a bare knife in his hands, rather than shaving with ONLY his hand. It's a reference to not trusting commercial technology, more than being without clothes.

Crumbly Writer

@Ross at Play

I know 'in future' exists as an expression, but this only sounds correct to me if 'in the future' is used instead.
Do others agree with that?
Can anyone explain why that would be so?

Since it's the Economist (which typically emphasizes precise language) I'm guessing it was a typo (i.e. they unintentionally dropped the "the").

Crumbly Writer

@PotomacBob

The sentence, without the "the," sounds downright unAmerican.

Nice pun (play on the word "American"). :)

awnlee jawking

@Crumbly Writer

It's the fact that they don't have anything on that's shocking, and the faster the delivery, the more dramatic.


I agree with the others - I find 'in the nude' more shocking than 'nude'.

Minimalism lacks the ability to convey a full set of nuances :(

AJ

awnlee jawking

@Ross at Play

Still, BrE versus AmE preferences do not explain my discomfort with their sentence.


I agree with you, I don't like 'in future' in that context.

AJ

Replies:   Ross at Play
Ross at Play

@awnlee jawking

Thanks. Perhaps I'm not going mad.
CW said, "Since it's the Economist (which typically emphasizes precise language)" - but either their standards are slipping or I'm getting better.
There's been three times in the last couple of months I've read something and thought, 'that's just plain wrong!'
The worst example, which their search engine won't find for me, was "delivery-on demand". YUCK!

Replies:   Crumbly Writer
Crumbly Writer
Updated:

@Ross at Play

CW said, "Since it's the Economist (which typically emphasizes precise language)" - but either their standards are slipping or I'm getting better.

There's been three times in the last couple of months I've read something and thought, 'that's just plain wrong!'

Don't forget, the Economist used to be a purely European publication. Since they opened their American edition, which is written and printed in America for a purely American audience, they're now printing many pieces by their American counterparts, and the language and sloppy language bleeds through.

PotomacBob

@Ernest Bywater

I assume someone who wrote a fictional story exists. What I do not assume is that something asserted in a fictional story is necessarily something the author believes to be true.

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