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    #1

    throw

    Dear teachers,

    1) Would you please explain the meaning of the underlined passage to me?

    "some of our most tenacious black belt quarrellers have come to it (quarrelling) late in life and mastered every throw, from the Crushing Silence to the Gloating Apology, in less than ten years of marriage."

    Those who keep silent and apologise are the adversaries of the black belt quarrellers, right? And the good quarrellers are proud and satisfied with this attitude/result = their opponent's defeat ?

    2) Does the word throw mean move, coup, manoeuvre here?

    3) It seems that there is a difference between a strategy (elaboration, conception of a move?) and a tactic (the move itself?), would please tell me what it is?

    Thank you very much for your help.
    Hela
    Last edited by hela; 27-Dec-2007 at 18:04.


    • Join Date: Oct 2006
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    #2

    Re: throw

    Quote Originally Posted by hela View Post
    Dear teachers,

    1) Would you please explain the meaning of the underlined passage to me?

    "some of our most tenacious black belt quarrellers have come to it (quarrelling) late in life and mastered every throw, from the Crushing Silence to the Gloating Apology, in less than ten years of marriage."

    Those who keep silent and apologise are the adversaries of the black belt quarrellers, right? And the good quarrellers are proud and satisfied with this attitude/result = their opponent's defeat ? No. "Black belt quarrellers" are those people who have elevated quarrelling in marriage/a relationship to a fine art [with judo being the source of imagery] and can use a range of techniques to achieve their aims. Their methods can range from silence to a grovelling apology.

    2) Does the word throw mean move, coup, manoeuvre here? It comes from judo, where the opposing fighters must use different methods of throwing each other.

    3) It seems that there is a difference between a strategy (elaboration, conception of a move?) and a tactic (the move itself?), would please tell me what it is? "strategy" and "tactic" do not appear in the passage you have given. Could you give us the reference?

    Thank you very much for your help.
    Hela
    ..

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    #3

    Re: throw

    Good evening, Anglika

    As for the quote in (1), I first understood it the way you described, i.e., it's the black belt quarrellers who ketp silent or aplologized, but then, because of what was said before: how cruel lovers can be to one another, I thought it could be wrong.

    Those who miss their first apprenticeship may care to enrol in the second, the bad marriage. This can be perilous for the neophyte: the mutual intimacy of spouses makes them at once more vulnerable and more dangerous in attack. Once sex is involved, the stakes are higher all-round. And there is an unspoken rule that those who love, or have loved, one another are granted a licence for unlimited beastliness such as is denied to mere sworn enemies. For all that, some of our most tenacious black belt quarrellers have come to it late in life and mastered every throw, from the Crushing Silence to the Gloating Apology, in less than ten years of marriage.

    b) What does a "crushing silence" mean? A silence that subdues the opponent ?
    c) isn't a "gloating apology" quite the opposite of a "grovelling apology"? The first implies that the apology is but a tactic which brings great satisfaction and smug while the second implies submissiveness and regret?

    3) My third question concerned this passage:

    After several years of rainy afternoons, brothers and sisters develop a sure feel for the tactics of attrition and the niceties of strategy so necessary in first rate quarrelling.

    Gratefully yours
    Last edited by hela; 28-Dec-2007 at 19:55.


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    #4

    Re: throw

    Quote Originally Posted by hela View Post
    Good evening, Anglika

    As for the quote in (1), I first understood it the way you described, i.e., it's the black belt quarrellers who ketp silent or aplologized, but then, because of what was said before: how cruel lovers can be to one another, I thought it could be wrong.

    Those who miss their first apprenticeship may care to enrol in the second, the bad marriage. This can be perilous for the neophyte: the mutual intimacy of spouses makes them at once more vulnerable and more dangerous in attack. Once sex is involved, the stakes are higher all-round. And there is an unspoken rule that those who love, or have loved, one another are granted a licence for unlimited beastliness such as is denied to mere sworn enemies. For all that, some of our most tenacious black belt quarrellers have come to it late in life and mastered every throw, from the Crushing Silence to the Gloating Apology, in less than ten years of marriage.

    I think the use of "black belt quarrellers" is emphasising the skill with which these people manipulate their partners through these techniques. They are the champions at it.

    b) What does a "crushing silence" mean? A silence that subdues the opponent ? It is almost impossible to put into words! It is the technique of using silence as a means of stopping the other person from going any further in an argument. It is often accompanied by what is called a "mulish expression", in which the person sets his/her jaw and refuses to meet the other person's eyes.
    c) isn't a "gloating apology" quite the opposite of a "grovelling apology"? The first implies that the apology is but a tactic which brings great satisfaction and smug while the second implies submissiveness and regret?
    Sorry - my error - I was in too much of a hurry, and meant "gloating".

    3) My third question concerned this passage:

    After several years of rainy afternoons, brothers and sisters develop a sure feel for the tactics of attrition and the niceties of strategy so necessary in first rate quarrelling.

    They have different meanings:
    Tactics =
    actions planned to achieve a specific end
    .
    Strategy = a plan designed to achieve a particular long-term aim.

    However, I have a feeling that the author here is using them as synonyms to make his sentence interesting, and to avoid repetition.

    Gratefully yours
    .

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    #5

    Re: throw

    Thank you very much Anglika. I wish you a very happy New Year.

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