I need help understanding the syntax of using “el que” as the substitute for “que” and “quien.”
In English and in Spanish with “que” and “quien,” the relative clauses make perfect sense alone when the inversion is removed.
Las chicas a quienes regalé rosas son hermanas.
The girls to whom I gave roses are sisters.
Alone and with inversion removed, the relative clause makes sense: I gave the roses to whom. (We understand that the pronoun whom, or the antecedent of the pronoun whom, receives the roses.)
However, the “el que”/“el cual” seems to use syntax that is very different, or at least impossible to translate in English.
La gente con la que fui a la fiesta es buena.
Its literally translated relative clause does not make sense:
I went to the party with the people that.
However, this is a perfectly valid use of the “el que” construction in relative clauses. It just doesn’t make sense to me. “El que,” in this case, seems to be a relative clause within a relative clause, to the eyes of an English speaker. This makes it difficult for me to comprehend the syntax construction of “el que” here.
It does make perfect sense to use it in the interjection syntax:
Creo que esas personas, las que fueron a la fiesta, son graciosas.
I think those people, the ones who went to the party, are funny.
Is there any way to break down the use of “el que” in the relative clause use so that someone like me can understand it? It would help me have a stronger understanding of Spanish pronouns/clauses.