The passive voice in essay writing
Passive essay example
Show me examples. When in doubt, use the active voice. Please do not use this list as a model for the format of your own reference list, as it may not match the citation style you are using. To emphasize an object. Awkward or unclear style prevents your reader from appreciating the ideas that are so clear to you when you write. The passive sentence focuses on handwashing practices rather than on the four members of staff. Passive Voice What this handout is about This handout will help you understand what the passive voice is, why many professors and writing instructors frown upon it, and how you can revise your paper to achieve greater clarity. A lot of people were harmed. In each of the sentences below, the passive voice is natural and clear. But do look for it when you revise.
In this ideology the argument used to sustain the subjugation of women has largely rested on premises about biological difference - society has used the biological differences between men and women to legitimate hierarchical structures of social inequality.
With the previous section in mind, you should also know that some instructors proclaim that the passive voice signals sloppy, lazy thinking. Consider these sentences from papers on American history: The working class was marginalized.
What is passive voice in writing
Sometimes in academic writing it might be expedient to use the passive voice in order to avoid naming the 'doer' of an action so that the message of your text is less inflammatory; for example, read the following excerpt: In this ideology the argument used to sustain the subjugation of women has largely rested on premises about biological difference - the biological differences between men and women have been used to legitimate hierarchical structures of social inequality. Get Grammarly for free Works on all your favorite websites Related Articles. And a few pages later: Plus, marketing links were being established. Susan Jones delivered baby Sophia at a. The passive sentence focuses on handwashing practices rather than on the four members of staff. DNA encodes genetic information. For example, it may be your main topic: Insulin was first discovered in by researchers at the University of Toronto. When you write in passive voice, the object of the sentence what is being acted upon becomes the subject. In writing, clarity often comes when you revise, not on your first try. The last two sentences illustrate a relationship that the first one lacks. When do I use passive voice? Passive voice Active voice In this ideology the argument used to sustain the subjugation of women has largely rested on premises about biological difference - the biological differences between men and women have been used to legitimate hierarchical structures of social inequality.
Style: Ten Lessons in Clarity and Grace. Use of the passive voice is not a grammatical error.
But do look for it when you revise. A lot of people were harmed.
When to use passive voice
In addition, in academic writing sometimes it is obvious, irrelevant or repetitive to state who the 'doer' of the sentence is: thus the passive voice is a useful way to construct these types of sentences. Active voice: Liam bought a new cell phone. These choices are yours. Lab reports Although more and more scientific journals accept or even prefer first-person active voice e. Your writing, at its best. The passive is used to avoid repeated reference to the known doer of the action ie. Active: Four members of the nursing staff observed the handwashing practices of staff during rostered shifts. In some sentences, passive voice can be perfectly acceptable.
DNA encodes genetic information. There were a great number of dead leaves covering the ground.
Women, because of their biological function as child bearers, have been traditionally confined to the domestic sphere and excluded from the world 'out there'. What is the passive voice? To create an authoritative tone Visitors are not allowed after p.
Consider this example: Over different contaminants have been dumped into the river.
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