which word does the attributive clause modify?

Nsinc   Thu Mar 15, 2007 6:45 am GMT
the absence of strife between the generations that was so characteristic of such societies

Does the attributive clause modify the word "absence" or the word "strife" ?
Liz   Thu Mar 15, 2007 4:44 pm GMT
I guess it modifies "the abscence of strife". That´s one unit. However, if you really want to pick either of the two, then it`s definitely "the abscence" that is modified.
Josh Lalonde   Thu Mar 15, 2007 8:08 pm GMT
Without seeing the whole context, it's hard to tell, but I agree, it's probably "absence".