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    #1

    Exclamation Vocabulary question

    Hi
    I've just got a quick question. In an english exam, we had to read a speech about the American Dream and then summarize it. This is one sentence that I wrote:

    As the most challenging, he describes the constant racial Segregation and says that this has destroyed America in the past, therefore not being a positive Impact on reaching the American Dream.

    My question is, can I use the therefore in that way or should I have used another word instead? If so, which one?

    Thank you so much already

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    #2

    Re: Vocabulary question

    "As the most challenging" is wrong.

    Racial segregation does not exist today, so it can't be described as "constant."

    Your use of "therefore" is OK.

    There is no need to capitalize "Impact."

  1. Roman55's Avatar
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    #3

    Re: Vocabulary question

    I am not a teacher.

    But you should capitalize 'English'. As a German I would have thought this would come naturally to you.

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    #4

    Re: Vocabulary question

    Quote Originally Posted by Roman55 View Post
    As a German, I would have thought this would come naturally to you.

    ***** NOT A TEACHER *****

    Am I right that the sentence quoted above is ambiguous?

    I could (easily!) be wrong, but I detect two possible readings:

    Reading #1: As / since / because I am a German, I would have thought this would come naturally to you.
    Reading #2: As / since / because you [Ellax] are a German, I would have thought this would come naturally to you.

    NOTES:

    1. I think that I know which reading you meant, but -- of course -- I do not know for sure.

    2. I raise this matter only because some learners might have a similar sentence on a test. If they give the "wrong" answer, their marks could suffer.

    3. I have no doubt that many native speakers would say a similar sentence, expecting their listeners to guess which reading is intended.



    James

  2. Roman55's Avatar
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    #5

    Re: Vocabulary question

    I am not a teacher.

    James, you are quite right to say that (in isolation) there is an inherent ambiguity in the phrase, 'As a German, I would have thought this would come naturally to you.'

    However, as the words German and Germany appear nowhere in my Member Info but do appear three times in the Member Info of Ellaxx26, in the context of this exchange, the meaning should be clear.

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    #6

    Re: Vocabulary question

    The misplaced modifier does give the initial impression that the writer is German.

    I would have thought this would come naturally to you, as a German.

    not a teacher

  3. Roman55's Avatar
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    #7

    Re: Vocabulary question

    Quote Originally Posted by tedmc View Post
    The misplaced modifier does give the initial impression that the writer is German.
    I am not a teacher.

    There is no misplaced modifier. It's a deliberate choice of wording.

    Why on earth do you think a German would think something like that about someone else? That makes no sense.

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    #8

    Re: Vocabulary question

    ***** NOT A TEACHER *****

    I am the first one to admit that I often say things that make no sense.

    To be very frank, I am embarrassed to say that this is how I interpreted your sentence:

    "You are German, and I am German. And you know how we Germans capitalize many nouns, so how could you have not capitalized 'English'?"


    I will try to be a better reader in the future.



    James

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    #9

    Re: Vocabulary question

    Thanks I must have accidently spelled it wrong... I'm not german. My native languages are both German and English. That's why I wouldn't automatically capitalize a noun.

    Thank you anway though :)

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