Usage and Grammar
Q. Is the following sentence grammatically incorrect, and if so, why? “My point will hopefully become clear in what follows.” I’ve been told that this sentence misuses the word “hopefully”—is that true?
A. Your sentence is fine (check any good dictionary). Some grammarians will argue that it’s the person who is hopeful, not the point, and that “I hope my point will become clear” and “I am hopeful that my point will become clear” are the grammatically correct ways to say this. Merriam-Webster, however, provides credentials for “hopefully” as a disjunct adverb, similar to “luckily,” “clearly,” and others. In CMOS such “sentence adverbs” are discussed in paragraphs 5.157 and 5.250 (s.v. “hopefully”).