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〜にも〜処理はされてる

zuotengdazuo

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Hi. I can’t quite understand the construction of the underlined sentence. It seems to me that it literally means wiring suits can process something else so that they can be bullet-proof. For example, when we say 李さんは部長に褒められた, 部長 is the one who praised Li. Likewise, the wiring suits seems to be processing something else. However, this reading doesn’t make sense. So how can I make sense of the structure 〜にも〜処理はされてる?
Thank you.
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bentenmusume

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Your confusion here is assuming that the に is marking (and has to mark) the wiring suit as the agent or "doer" of the action 処理する.
Of course, that's one role に can serve in a passive construction, but it's not the only one.

Consider the following expressions, where に is used adverbially:
順番に呼んだ ⇒ 順番に呼ばれた
or these, where it's used to mark the target of the verb:
料理に工夫を加える ⇒ 料理に工夫が加えられる

Note that those passive expressions do not mean (or, at least, are highly unlikely to mean in any real-life situation) "[someone] was called by an/the order" (i.e. an "order" called them) or "[something] is given a twist by food".
In neither case is に marking the agent. It is simply functioning in the same role it serves in the corresponding active sentence. In both, the agent is implied.

Because I imagine you're going to ask me, "Then how am I supposed to know in a passive sentence whether に is marking the agent or functioning in its usual role with the agent implied?" (if you're not thinking this, sorry for assuming ;)), I'll add this:
Japanese is a very high-context language, so you often have to use common sense and context to interpret things.

Does it make more sense that a "wiring suit" (an inanimate, non-sentient object) would be "processing" some other thing that the author doesn't even bother mentioning to be (kinda-sorta) bulletproof, or that the wiring suit itself was the target of the action, and the agent isn't mentioned because it's not relevant? It's the latter, just like in the above sentences, where it makes more sense that people were called in order and a new twist was added to the food by someone unstated.
 
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zuotengdazuo

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Thank you for clearing my confusion.
Because I imagine you're going to ask me, "Then how am I supposed to know in a passive sentence whether に is marking the agent or functioning in its usual role with the agent implied?" (if you're not thinking this, sorry for assuming ;)), I'll add this:
Japanese is a very high-context language, so you often have to use common sense and context to interpret things.
It’s thoughtful of you to add that. I know that, not only Japanese, many languages are highly contextual, including my native language.:)
or that the wiring suit itself was the target of the action, and the agent isn't mentioned because it's not relevant? It's the latter,
I have previously considered that the wiring suit can be the object of the verb 処理. I could have asked if it would also make sense if we omit に in that sentence (ワイヤリングスーツも一応申し訳程度の防弾処理はされてる). So it is fine to omit the に, but the “target of the action” nuance would be lost, right?
 

bentenmusume

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Always happy to help.;)

And yes, you're correct in observing that にも could also be just も here and it would essentially describe the same exact thing. I wouldn't even say the nuance changes all that much. It's really just a semantic difference.
 

Toritoribe

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I have previously considered that the wiring suit can be the object of the verb 処理.
I think this is also a key of your misinterpretation. Notice that it's 防弾処理されてる, and not 防弾処理されてる. Actually, 処理 is not the stem of a -suru verb 処理する but the object of する there.

active sentence
スーツに防弾処理する。
passive
スーツに防弾処理される。 (防弾処理は is the topicalization of the subject 防弾処理が in the original sentence, needless to say.)

cf.
スーツ防弾処理する。
スーツ防弾処理される。

スーツ防弾処理される。 is interpreted as the omission of を after 処理, since 処理する can't take に as the target marker.

In addition to bentenmusume-san's excellent explanation, から or によって is used to indicate the agent in a passive sentence when the original verb takes に.
e.g.
彼が彼女に手紙を送った。
彼から彼女に手紙が送られた。

When an inanimate thing is the subject of a passive sentence, and the agent is person/people, に is not used to indicate the agent even when に is not used in the original verb.
e.g.
学生がデータを集めた。
学生によってデータが集められた。
×学生にデータが集められた。


Incidentally, as bebtenmusumesan wrote, one of the reasons why the passive form is used there is to avoid mentioning the agent. ワイヤリングスーツにも一応申し訳程度の防弾処理はしてるけど is interpreted that the speaker did it.
 
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