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I understand the basics of the "suffering passive". For example, it's my understanding that in a sentence like 友達にビールを飲まれた, "tomodachi ni" marks the person who drank your beer.


Who does ぼく refer to and what is the role of ぼくに in this sentence?


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Can I add a bonus question?: Is it possible to understand the function of も in this sentence? (emphasis or "also", but we do not have context to know what the ”also-も” is referring to? – Tim Feb 1 '14 at 2:50
@Tim この「も」はgoo辞書 の2番の、「逆接の意を表す」で、 『文句を言われても、何もできないよ』(I can't do anything even if you complain to me) という感じだと思います。 – user1016 Aug 2 '14 at 2:17
@Choko: Thank you. It is clear now (thanks to your translation: ironically my problem was not the も, it was understanding 困る!), although I still don't understand what is happening in this cartoon, or even which frame to look at first. – Tim Aug 2 '14 at 3:11
@Tim Hehe・・・ In the right frame, Nobita says to his grandson Sewashi, who travelled from the future by Doraemon's time machine, "Am I to marry Jaiko(=Jaian's sister)!? Impossible! No way! I don't like that girl!" So in the left frame, Sewashi responds "Don't complain to me. It's not my fault." and Doraemon says "Shall I show you your photo album (which he has brought from the future)?" – user1016 Aug 2 '14 at 3:22
@Choko: Thank you. – Tim Aug 2 '14 at 3:31
up vote 4 down vote accepted

In [僕]{ぼく}に[文句]{もんく}言われても[困]{こま}る, 僕に doesn't mark the person who does 文句言う, but the indirect object of 言う; 僕に文句(を)言う = (you) complain to me. It's saying "I will 困る if you 文句を言う to me."

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Good explanation. – istrasci Jan 31 '14 at 15:52
In passive voice (~られる), how do you tell if the に marks the person doing the action or if に marks the indirect object of the action? Like for example here に marks the person who does the action. – 3 to 5 business days Jul 30 '14 at 21:42
@3to5businessdays Here, the に in 僕に文句言われても困る cannot mark the agent of 文句を言う, because "I can't do anything even if I complain to me" wouldn't make sense. For example, 山田さんに文句言われても困る could be interpreted as either "I will 困る if 山田さん complains" or "I will 困る if (you/someone) complains to 山田さん", and I think it's up to the context. – user1016 Aug 2 '14 at 2:09

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