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  1. #1
    Chrono Xay is offline Newbie
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    Unhappy Placing a name at different points in a sentence. What does this do?

    I'm writing a letter to a good friend of mine where the situation has been a little tense, and I've been trying to understand how placing a name at different points within a sentence tend to change the feeling of the idea(s), feeling(s), etc. expressed therein. I want to portray my ideas and feelings without appearing condescending, unsympathetic or unconcerned with their feelings, or any other potentially destructive mode of communication or expression.

    For example, how do the feelings implied in the following sentence change when the name of the person mentioned is used in the beginning, middle or end of a sentence? :

    1) Jackie, do you understand what I'm saying?
    2) Do you understand, Jackie, what I'm saying?
    3) Do you understand what I'm saying, Jackie?

    (I understand that there are probably a couple of grammar mistakes in these sentences, if not also my post, but I hope they help illustrate part of my question adequately. If not, I'd be happy to give a better example). :)
    Last edited by Chrono Xay; 27-May-2009 at 12:26. Reason: Mis-spelled word

  2. #2
    Anglika is offline No Longer With Us
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    Default Re: Placing a name at different points in a sentence. What does this do?

    Quote Originally Posted by Chrono Xay View Post
    I'm writing a letter to a good friend of mine where the situation has been a little tense, and I've been trying to understand how placing a name at different points within a sentence tend to change the feeling of the idea(s), feeling(s), etc. expressed therein. I want to portray my ideas and feelings without appearing condescending, unsympathetic or unconcerned with their feelings, or any other potentially destructive mode of communication or expression.

    For example, how do the feelings implied in the following sentence change when the name of the person mentioned is used in the beginning, middle or end of a sentence? :

    1) Jackie, do you understand what I'm saying? Strong and slightly aggressive
    2) Do you understand, Jackie, what I'm saying? Awkward
    3) Do you understand what I'm saying, Jackie? Politest and most usual structure.

    (I understand that there are probably a couple of grammar mistakes in these sentences, if not also my post, but I hope they help illustrate part of my question adequately. If not, I'd be happy to give a better example). :)
    ....

  3. #3
    Chrono Xay is offline Newbie
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    Default Re: Placing a name at different points in a sentence. What does this do?

    Ok. Thank you, Anglika. :)

    If I'd written a longer sentence, I think 2) might have been a little less "awkward". At least with 1) and 3), their either exactly in the beginning or the end. Did you understand what I was talking about in 2)?

    Aren't names usually inserted before, in between, or after a complete thought (if at all)?

    I used the structure shown in 3), but at the same I'd like to understand why 1) and 3) are the way they are. If you don't mind me asking, the psychology of it, if you will.

    By the way, while you're answering my posts, I'm open to any tips you may have when writing. :)

  4. #4
    Anglika is offline No Longer With Us
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    Default Re: Placing a name at different points in a sentence. What does this do?

    Quote Originally Posted by Chrono Xay View Post
    Ok. Thank you, Anglika. :)

    If I'd written a longer sentence, I think 2) might have been a little less "awkward". At least with 1) and 3), their either exactly in the beginning or the end. Did you understand what I was talking about in 2)?

    Aren't names usually inserted before, in between, or after a complete thought (if at all)?

    I used the structure shown in 3), but at the same I'd like to understand why 1) and 3) are the way they are. If you don't mind me asking, the psychology of it, if you will.

    By the way, while you're answering my posts, I'm open to any tips you may have when writing. :)
    In [1], if you think about it, it is almost as if you are shouting at the person "You are not listening to me! JACKIE...."

    It is quite normal when talking to a person to end your sentence/comment with their name. It establishes that it is a specifically intended comment, not a general one.


    [2] is a spoken structure that allows the intention of specificity without the full on aggression of [1]. I would say I most often hear it in arguments where one person is beginning to feel that they are not being listened to by the other party.

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