The Similarities And Differences Of Passive Voice In English

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During the acquisition of English, Vietnamese learner have to encounter many difficulties because of these two languages belong two different groups. One of the most difficult problems is passive voice. Take these sentences as example : “ The rice is cook” and “ Cơm chín rồi”. We can see that these two sentences have the same meaning but one in passive form and the other in active form. Thus, It makes learners confused about using passive form properly when translating because sometimes an active sentence in Vietnamese can be a passive sentence in English. As a teacher-to-be of English, a Vietnamese learner, I want to do this paper to help English learner clear about all the similarities and differences of passive voice in English…show more content…
These are some definitions:
“In grammar, the voice of a verb describes the relationship between the action (or state) that the verb expresses and the participants identified by its arguments (subject, object, etc.). When the subject is the agent or doer of the action, the verb is in the active voice. When the subject is the patient, target of the action, the verb is said to be in the passive voice”. ( “ Voice” n.d.)
“Voice is a grammatical category of verbs that is related to what thing or person is acting and what thing or person is being acted upon.” (Crystal, 2002)
There are two voices in English : active voice and passive voice. While active is used to focus on the doer, passive voice is used to emphasize on the reciever or the act rather than the performer. Take this sentence as a example:
“ Her brother was captured by the police.”
“Her brother” is the recipient of the action “captured” was emphasized and the performer is “ the police.
As a matter of fact, passive voice is not widely used as active. However, in some cases like acadamic writing, passive is the chosen over active.
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