Submitted by llellc on February 3, 2012

“advocate for” or just “advocate”?

Is “advocate for” redundant? For example, does one advocate human rights, or advocate for them?

Comments

Sort by

@BGriffin

My apologies, I failed to notice the typo.

The "to" which precedes recycle is obviously redundant.

0 vote Vote!  •  Permalink  •  Report Abuse

"advocating for" as a phrase has upticked dramatically since 1980 in google books, especially in US English. Whether this is use or misuse, or a shift in the language is debatable.

0 vote Vote!  •  Permalink  •  Report Abuse

Hairy Scot,
The example you suggest is not only awkward, but grammatically incorrect:
"....The government has been advocating that the community to recycle more.....".
Read it out loud to yourself...every word. No one speaks like that. Well, I guess you just did. I'll rephrase, any who speaks like that is likely to have a hard time retaining the respect of others.
If you are going to advocate for a specific use, you should probably at least read it out loud to make sure it sounds correct, before publishing.
.
'...for the community to recycle more.'
or
'...that the community recycle more.'

0 vote Vote!  •  Permalink  •  Report Abuse

May I use "advocating" without "for"?
You not only may, you must.


The government has been advocating that the community to recycle more.

0 vote Vote!  •  Permalink  •  Report Abuse

The government has been advocating for the community to recycle more. May I use "advocating" without "for"?

0 vote Vote!  •  Permalink  •  Report Abuse

"Advocate" comes from the Latin "ad" and "vocare" (literally "to call to"). I suppose that one could call to someone for someone else, but the denotation of this word requires that we not employ the redundant "for." To advocate a thing is to be "for" it already, making the idea of advocating "for" something not being for it, but being for whatever is for it.

So, it is always "advocate," never "advocate for" in a verbal form. As a nominative, of course the label is required to indicate to whom an advocate is attached.

1 vote Vote!  •  Permalink  •  Report Abuse

Thank you!! I think this whole thing came about in the context of students being self-advocates, which is eventually what we settled on. "Advocating for himself" seems awkward, or "advocating his needs," I think, is just poor grammar. In that case you'd just be speaking on behalf of the needs, not stating them clearly and making them evident. So we said he's a good self-advocate because he articulates his needs appropriately.

0 vote Vote!  •  Permalink  •  Report Abuse

As state in the previous comments, one is a verb and the other is a noun. You just need be sure that you are pronouncing each term correctly to show the difference.

to advo-KATE = verb
an advo-KIT = not

(Of course, people's accents might be slightly different... but that's how they each sound in my head!)

4 votes Vote!  •  Permalink  •  Report Abuse

If used as verb it is advocate, if used as noun you advocate for/of something/somebody. For example: I do not advocate the use of violence. An advocate for hospital workers/ advocate of free speech.

9 votes Vote!  •  Permalink  •  Report Abuse

One can advocate something or one can be an advocate for something.

5 votes Vote!  •  Permalink  •  Report Abuse

Your Comment