Е. Make a summary of the text

Use the active vocabulary.

^ R Grammar notes The Passive

§ 1. The passive: general information. Active voice and passive voice.

In the active, the subject of the verb is the person or thing doing the action: John cooked the food last night.

In the passive, the action is done to the subject: The food was cooked last night.

The passive occurs very commonly in English: it is not merely an alternative to the active, but has its own distinctive uses.

§ 2. Forms of the passive. Passives can be formed in the following ways:

  • ‘to be’ + past participle: The food is/has been/will be cooked. The food is/was being cooked;
  • modal + ‘to be/to have been’ + past participle: The food may be/ have been cooked;
  • infinitive: ‘to be/to have been’ + past participle active: The food is to be/was to have been cooked;
  • -ing form: ‘being/having been’ + past participle: Being/Having been cooked...

§ 3. Transitive and intransitive verbs.

The passive occurs only with verbs used transitively, that is, verbs that can be followed by an object.

There are verbs that can be used transitively or intransitively: The door opened (perhaps by itself). The door was opened (perhaps by someone).

§ 4. Uses of the passive.

  1. The passive voice is a very versatile construction. It is particularly useful when the performer of the action is unknown or irrelevant to the matter at hand. Thus you might write in a memo Office mail is now delivered twice a day where what is important is the frequency of mail delivery, not the identity of the people working in the mailroom.

You can also use the passive voice to conceal the performer of an action or the identity of a person responsible for a mistake: We had hoped to repoit on this problem but the data was inadvertently deleted from our files.

Who deleted the data? By using the passive voice the writer is able to avoid identifying the guilty party. This virtue of obscuring responsibility is in part what makes the passive voice so tempting to anyone working in an organization where something has gone wrong. Since the occasions for avoiding responsibility are multitudinous, passive verbs are bound to thrive for at least in the foreseeable future.

Surprisingly enough, you can also use the passive voice to emphasize the performer of the action by putting the performer in a prepositional phrase using by at the end of the sentence: The breakthrough was achieved by Burlingame and Evans, two researchers in the university’s genetic engineering lab. In this way the passive voice functions like a well-run awards ceremony. It creates suspense by delaying the announcement of the names.

  1. You may sometimes find it desirable to conjoin a passive verb form with a passive infinitive, as in “The building is scheduled to be demolished next week” and “The piece was originally intended to be played on the harpsichord.” These sentences are perfectly acceptable. But it’s easy for things to go wrong in these double passive constructions. They sometimes end in ambiguity: An independent review of the proposal was requested to be made by the committee. In this sentence, is the committee making the request or doing the review? What is worse, double passives often sound u ngrammatical.
  2. The Passive is used in factual writing, particularly in describing procedures or processes, academic writing and official letters where we often wish to omit the agent, and use passive.
  1. g.: Nuclear waste will still be radioactive even after 20, 000 years, so it must be disposed of very carefully. It can be stored as a liquid in stainless- steel containers which are enclosed in concrete. The most dangerous nuclear waste can be turned into glass. It is planned to store this glass in deep underground mines.
  1. Verbs that can be followed by either object + object or object + prepositional object in active clauses can have two corresponding passive forms.
    The passive form you choose depends on which is more appropriate in a particular context. Compare:

Active:              Passive:

  • she handed me the plate;              •              I was handed the plate;
  • she handed the plate to me.              •              the plate was handed to me.

Other verbs like ‘to hand’ are give, lend, offer, promise, sell, tell, throw.

However, verbs that can’t be followed by object + object in the active have only one of these passive forms:

  • he-dcscribed-rne-the- situation;              •              Ewasdcscnbcd the situation;
  • he described the situation to me.              •              the situation was described to me.

Other verbs like this include demonstrate, explain, introduce, mention, report, suggest.

F.l. Identify all the passive forms in the text “Evolution of Modern Marketing” and translate the sentences into Russian.

  1. 2. Write the correct words in the blanks to convert each sentence from passive to active voice.
  1. The company’s tax liability is reduced by a bond received from the foreign government. — The foreign government....
  2. Under the Code, a foreign tax is defined as any tax imposed by a foreign country or US possession. — ... a foreign tax as any tax ....
  3. The land improvements were made by the foreign subsidiary controlled by Atkins, Ltd. — The foreign subsidiary ....
  4. Coronda, Ltd. is not owned by a foreign corporation. — A foreign corporation ....
  1. 3. Rewrite these sentences beginning with (The) + a noun formed from the italicized verb and a passive verb. Choose an appropriate verb tense and make any necessary changes. Which variant sounds more formal?
  1. They will consider the issue at next week’s meeting. The consideration will he given to the issue at next week’s meeting.
  2. They eventually permitted the site to be used for the festival.
  3. They have transferred the money to my bank account.
  4. They will present the trophy after the speeches.
  5. They will not announce the findings until next week.
  6. They demolished the building in only two days.
  7. They will produce the new car in a purpose-build factory.
  1. 4.
    If possible, make a corresponding passive sentence. If it is not possible, write “No passive.”
  1. The committee called on Paula to explain her reasons for the proposed changes. — Paula was called on to explain her reasons for the proposed changes.
  2. I got down most of what he said in his lecture. — Most of what he said in his lecture ....
  3. When I was young my aunt and uncle looked after me. — When I was young I....
  4. The surgeons operated on him for nearly 12 hours. — He ....
  5. Sandra let out a scream and collapsed to the floor. — A scream ....
  6. Hugh takes after Edward —¦ they’re both very well organized. — Edward ....
  7. All his relatives approved of his decision. — His decision ....
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Источник: Е. Н. Малюга. Английский язык для экономистов: Учебник для вузов / Е. Н. Малюга, Н.              В. Ваванова, Г. Н. Куприянова, И. В. Пушнова. — СПб.: Питер,2005. — 304 с.: ил.. 2005

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