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Never use a big word when a little one will convey the same or a similar meaning.

I read it in an English textbook the other day. What the author asserted was very intriguing to me, and I found it very helpful. It can be a great lead to writing English in a concise way. Having said that, I can't ignore the fact that we'll end up being in a real catch-22 with his instruction. If we shouldn't use a big word when a little one will convey the same or a similar meaning, why is it that we work so hard to enrich our vocabulary? It makes no sense to struggle with vocabulary called big words if there is no place to use. We need to learn them, but we had better hide them?
What do you think?


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Emi2号">

Emi2号  

Re: タイトルなし

Hi Ryoko san!

Thank you for sharing your thoughts with me! I think it's pretty natural for English learners to be eager to use new words and phrases they've just learned. It's natural, and it's a good lead in a way. Having said that, we use any languagess to communicate with people and we shouldn't forget about that. If our listeners look confused, the responsibility must fall on us. I'll keep what you said in mind to be a good writer!

2013/12/06 (Fri) 10:30 | EDIT | Emi2号さん">REPLY |  

Ryoko  

I think you need to learn those big words only if you are studying for TOEFL, TOEIC, or step tests. It's kind of like how American students need to learn big words for SAT (pretty much equivalent to a College center test in Japan) , LSAT (a test to get into law schools), or GRE (a test to get into master's programs).

In your daily life, you rarely come across any big words. I remember when I was working as a counselor, all the staff used to speak more formally with many technical terms, but they switched how the spoke when they were speaking to their clients. They were speaking more casually and simply so that their clients could understand what they were talking about. I think it is necessary to learn big words when you are studying something specific, but when you come out to the public and try to communicate your ideas with people who have no idea what you are studying about, then you need to communicate in a way that anyone would understand what you are talking about.

I'm not sure if I'm stating my points clear enough for you, but this is what I think about why we need to learn big words. What do you think?

2013/12/03 (Tue) 08:08 | EDIT | REPLY |  

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