Passive voice: Simons: ‘Mistakes were made’ — Alison Redford’s phrase the sorriest excuse of all

 

Simons: ‘Mistakes were made’ — Alison Redford’s phrase the sorriest excuse of all

Simons: ‘Mistakes were made’ — Alison Redford’s phrase the sorriest excuse of all.

http://fullcomment.nationalpost.com/2014/08/07/barbara-kay-redford-sees-no-i-in-mistakes-were-made/

Newspaper editors are noticing grammar this week, as former premier Alison Redford leaves political office.  As both of these editorials note, when a politician says “Mistakes were made”, they are using the passive voice, and therefore, they aren’t taking any personal responsibility for those mistakes.  When we use direct voice, and take responsibility, we say, “I made mistakes”.

Both editorials point out some reasons why grammar makes a difference in communication.  The tense, the voice, the pronouns that are used can all change the meaning of what we say.  These are important communication tools.  Yes, it’s very slow, and not very exciting to study all of the points of English grammar, but it’s important if you want to communicate clearly and effectively!

If you want to learn more about, and practice this grammar, then follow this link.

http://www.ego4u.com/en/cram-up/grammar/passive

 

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