Sometimes your commas and quotation marks are arranged as perfectly as the crystals in a snowflake—yet your style is uncomfortable and sad, like leaky boots. Need an example? Look at this email from a Sparkler:
I have a grammar question for you. In my essay, I've written:
From this, we see the authority and dominance that he, as a male and a “physician of high standing” in a patriarchal society, has over her.
Is this grammatically correct? And is the use of punctuation correct as well?
Yes, your grammar and punctuation are fine. But two style problems make this a subpar sentence.
1. That vague "this." Don't start sentences with the word "this," assuming that your reader will know what you're talking about because of the context. Instead, say "From his outburst," or "From the way he behaves at the party," or "From the narrator," or whatever it is you mean. This will A) Specifying what "this" means will A) force you to clarify your thoughts in your own mind, and B) help your readers.
2. That long aside. Too much time elapses between "he" and "has over her." We can't concentrate on what happens between the commas, because we're anxiously waiting to find out how the sentence ends. It's not a natural break.
I would revise like this:
From this scene, we see that he has authority and dominance over her because he is a man and a "physician of high standing" in a patriarchal society.
Happy snow day, Sparklers!