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Thread: Tenses

  1. krazykatie


    Which tense do you use in essays? Do you still use present tense if you are talking about an article which was written in past tense? Please help me if you can.


  2. Key Member
    English Teacher
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    • Join Date: May 2005
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    Re: Tenses

    As a rule, essays about literature are written the present tense, especially when referring to the author..

    "Shakespeare uses blank verse for nobility and prose for common people." "Pope's genius is responsible for many of the most common English adages." You can, however use other tenses if you are just recounting the story. "Hamlet knew he could defeat Laertes in a duel."

    Essays about other topics can be written in the tense (tenses) that is (are) appropriate to the subject matter.

    • Join Date: Jul 2005
    • Posts: 1

    Re: Tenses

    Your help has been very useful, thankyou.


  3. mikephd

    Re: Tenses

    I have the same problem.

    When I read some academic journals, I always found people quoted literature in past tense.

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