write in better English

Status
Not open for further replies.

hela

Senior Member
Joined
Apr 12, 2004
Member Type
Student or Learner
Native Language
Arabic
Home Country
Tunisia
Current Location
Tunisia
Dear teachers,

Would you please correct my English?

QUESTION:
How does the writer fight the negative effects of confinement?

ANSWER:

a) To fill in himself (?) the void / vacuum caused by loneliness & the sense of uselessness, the writer [WHAT IS BEST?]
- establishes to himself a discipline / sets himself a discipline that he follows everyday (?)
- makes it a rule / lays it down as an absolute rule to follow a regular set of tasks (?)
such as ① waking up early, ② keeping his room clean & tidy, ③ keeping fit, ④ working as a baker, ⑤ participating in the production / planning of / setting up radio programmes (?), ⑥ writing and reading.

OR

b) To break up the monotony, to forget about the prison world & not to sink into despair, the writer does not let himself go, ① he pays attention to his appearance (keeps fit & clean), ② keeps informed (listens to the news & reads), ③ keeps busy & make himself useful & productive (works in the bakery and sets up radio programmes), and ④ keeps in touch / stays connected with the outside world by corresponding with his acquaintances (family & friends ?) / relations.

OR ELSE

c) To forget that his is incarcerated / secluded, the writer establishes himself a certain discipline in his everyday routine. With a clocklike regularity he wakes up early in the morning to tidy up his room and exercise, then goes to work at the bakery till noon.
He tries to be physically fit and mentally sound perhaps to prepare himself to the real world once he is out.

Thanks a million,
Hela
 
Last edited:

bhaisahab

Moderator
Staff member
Joined
Apr 12, 2008
Member Type
Retired English Teacher
Native Language
British English
Home Country
England
Current Location
Ireland
Hi, This looks good to me, I just added an s to make.:lol:
b) To break up the monotony, to forget about the prison world & not to sink into despair, the writer does not let himself go, ① he pays attention to his appearance (keeps fit & clean), ② keeps informed (listens to the news & reads), ③ keeps busy & makes himself useful & productive (works in the bakery and sets up radio programmes), and ④ keeps in touch / stays connected with the outside world by corresponding with his acquaintances (family & friends ?) / relations.
 

Anglika

No Longer With Us
Joined
Oct 19, 2006
Member Type
Other
Dear teachers,

Would you please correct my English?

QUESTION:
How does the writer fight the negative effects of confinement?

ANSWER:

a) To fill the void / vacuum [either is fine] caused by loneliness & the sense of uselessness, the writer [WHAT IS BEST?]
- establishes for himself a discipline
- makes it a rule / lays it down as an absolute rule to follow a regular set of tasks [either is fine]
such as ① waking up early, ② keeping his room clean & tidy, ③ keeping fit, ④ working as a baker, ⑤ participating in the production / planning of / setting up of radio programmes [any of these are fine], ⑥ writing and reading.

OR

b) To break up the monotony, to forget about the prison world & not to sink into despair, the writer does not let himself go. He ① pays attention to his appearance (keeps fit & clean), ② keeps informed (listens to the news & reads), ③ keeps busy & makes himself useful & productive (works in the bakery and sets up radio programmes), and ④ keeps in touch / stays connected with the outside world by corresponding with his acquaintances (family & friends ?) / relations.

OR ELSE

c) To forget that he is incarcerated, the writer establishes for himself a certain discipline in his everyday routine. With clocklike regularity he wakes up early in the morning to tidy up his room and exercise, then goes to work at the bakery till noon. He tries to be physically fit and mentally sound in order to prepare himself for his return to the real world once he has served his term/sentence.

Thanks a million,
Hela
.
 

hela

Senior Member
Joined
Apr 12, 2004
Member Type
Student or Learner
Native Language
Arabic
Home Country
Tunisia
Current Location
Tunisia
Hello teachers,

In the same context I'd like to know what you would say:

1) to practise sport / sports / sporting activities?
What's the difference between the 3 words, please?

2) The programs are monitored from the radio room. The radio schedule is made up by the radio committee, of which I am a member.

How would you explain "monitored" here: controlled, operated, checked, managed, directed, broadcasted (?) / something else?

3) From noon, I am free until 3:20, the evening mandatory lockup, when we are required, again, to stand before our cell doors to be counted.

"lockup" = confinement, internment, detention, incarceration, enclosure ?
= the moment prisoners are kept under lock & key // shut / confined in their cells / something else ?

4) In the following sentence the word "epitomize" doesn't fit, I'm sure. What should I use instead? The writer compares the joy of receiving mail to the merriment one feels (correct English ??) at Christmas time.

"Christmas epitomizes the joy the writer feels when he is about to receive a letter."
Is "epitomize" a synonym of "symbolize"? But neither fits here.

Many thanks,
Hela
 
Last edited:

Anglika

No Longer With Us
Joined
Oct 19, 2006
Member Type
Other
Hello teachers,

In the same context I'd like to know what you would say:

1) to practise sport / sports / sporting activities?
What's the difference between the 3 words, please? Nothing. Usually, though, one takes part in sport.

2) The programs are monitored from the radio room. The radio schedule is made up by the radio committee, of which I am a member.

How would you explain "monitored" here: controlled, operated, checked, managed, directed, broadcasted (?) / something else?
To monitor something means to keep a check on its progress

3) From noon, I am free until 3:20, the evening mandatory lockup, when we are required, again, to stand before our cell doors to be counted.

"lockup" = confinement, internment, detention, incarceration, enclosure ?
= the moment prisoners are kept under lock & key // shut / confined in their cells / something else ? The prisoners are required to be at their cells at this time in order that the warders can be check on them, and presumably they are then locked into the cells for the night.

4) In the following sentence the word "epitomize" doesn't fit, I'm sure. What should I use instead? The writer compares the joy of receiving mail to the merriment one feels (correct English ??) at Christmas time.

"Christmas epitomizes the joy the writer feels when he is about to receive a letter."
Is "epitomize" a synonym of "symbolize"? But neither fit here.

I think it is ok.
"epitomize" = to be a perfect example of something

Many thanks,
Hela
.
 

hela

Senior Member
Joined
Apr 12, 2004
Member Type
Student or Learner
Native Language
Arabic
Home Country
Tunisia
Current Location
Tunisia
Good morning Anglika,

1) Can we say "to do/practise gymnastic exercises/physical movements" ?

3) I don't understand this structure, would you please explain it to me?
The prisoners are required to be at their cells at this time in order that the warders can be check on them, and presumably they are then locked into the cells for the night.
4) So the sentence "Christmas epitomizes the joy the writer feels when he is about to receive a letter" is correct ?

Here is another paragraph, if you wouldn't mind:

To palliate/alleviate/mitigate the distress caused by detention, the writer endeavours to follow a personal routine that is not imposed by the custodial XXX (I mean the management), which might give him a sense of freedom / make him feel as if he were not imprisoned but rather leading a normal life.

What do you think of the whole passage, please?

Thanks :)
 
Last edited:

Anglika

No Longer With Us
Joined
Oct 19, 2006
Member Type
Other
Good morning Anglika,

1) Can we say "to do/practise gymnastic exercises/physical movements" ? You can certainly practice gymnastic exercises/physical movements, but that will carry the meaning that you are repeating these in order to become skilled at them. "I do gymnastics/gymnastic exercises" is acceptable. "I do physical movements" is meaningless since all movement is physical movement.


3) I don't understand this structure, would you please explain it to me? Sorry sorry sorry:oops: - late night typing so "be" crept in. Ignore it. "...the warders can check on them...

4) So the sentence "Christmas epitomizes the joy the writer feels when he is about to receive a letter" is correct ? It's seems fine to me.

Here is another paragraph, if you wouldn't mind:

To palliate/alleviate/mitigate the distress caused by his detention, the writer endeavours to follow a personal routine that is not imposed by the custodial XXX (I mean the management)his custodians, which might give gives him a sense an illusion of freedom / makes him feel as if he were not imprisoned but rather leading a normal life.

What do you think of the whole passage, please? It needs a little tweaking, but is essentially ok. I've indicated some changes you might like to consider.

Thanks :)
.
 

hela

Senior Member
Joined
Apr 12, 2004
Member Type
Student or Learner
Native Language
Arabic
Home Country
Tunisia
Current Location
Tunisia
Good afternoon, Anglika

Thank you very much for your patience :up:

So "to practice (= practise ?) gymnastic exercises" is used for sportsmen / gymnasts, and "to do gymnastic exercises" is used for people like me who workout just to be healthy?

Is the word "slammer" an informal equivalent of "lockup"?

See you
 

Anglika

No Longer With Us
Joined
Oct 19, 2006
Member Type
Other
Good afternoon, Anglika

Thank you very much for your patience :up:

So "to practice (= practise ?) gymnastic exercises" is used for sportsmen / gymnasts, and "to do gymnastic exercises" is used for people like me who workout just to be healthy? Seems a fair situation!

Is the word "slammer" an informal equivalent of "lockup"? Yes, a slang word for prison.

See you
:hi:
 

BobK

Harmless drudge
Staff member
Joined
Jul 29, 2006
Member Type
English Teacher
Native Language
English
Home Country
UK
Current Location
UK
Arriving rather late: "slammer" (presumably so-called because of the doors slamming) reminds me of another synonym for 'confined to their cells' - quite informal, but it has been used in speeches at Westminster: "banged up". An MP might ask: "Can it be right, in the 21st century, for prisoners on remand [that is, not convicted for anything yet] should be banged up for 23 hours a day and allowed out of their cells for barely an hour of so-called 'exercise'?"

b
 

hela

Senior Member
Joined
Apr 12, 2004
Member Type
Student or Learner
Native Language
Arabic
Home Country
Tunisia
Current Location
Tunisia
Good morning everyone,

Here are other questions if you don't mind.

1) Help s.o. do sthg / help s.o. to do sthg: both correct?

2) to submit / object to + obeying / obey ?
Do I always have to use the gerund in this case or can I also use the infinitive ?
Would you please give me examples of verbs + preposition that are only followed by the -ing form and not the infinitive?

3) What noun can I use to name the time at which prisoners are shut in their cells other than "the lockup":
a) the shutting off of the cell doors
b) the shutting up / away of prisoners ?
c) something else?

4) He makes his own routine to avoid feeling to pressed upon. Correct? What does it mean ?

Many thanks
 

BobK

Harmless drudge
Staff member
Joined
Jul 29, 2006
Member Type
English Teacher
Native Language
English
Home Country
UK
Current Location
UK
Good morning everyone,

Here are other questions if you don't mind.

1) Help s.o. do sthg / help s.o. to do sthg: both correct?
Both correct, but different meanings. If you help someone to do something you just facilitate their doing of it (maybe you phone a friend who can bend a rule for them). If you help them do it you actually get your hands dirty.
2) to submit / object to + obeying / obey ?
Do I always have to use the gerund in this case or can I also use the infinitive ?
Yes (I think - Anglika?), if you're using a verb. But as a gerund is a verbal noun you can also use a noun (or noun phrase) - 'submit to punishment', 'object to this sort of tax'
Would you please give me examples of verbs + preposition that are only followed by the -ing form and not the infinitive?

3) What noun can I use to name the time at which prisoners are shut in their cells other than "the lockup":
a) the shutting off of the cell doors
b) the shutting up / away of prisoners ?
c) something else?

I prefer b; but if 'the lockup' is used in a native speaker's text, it may be the accepted jargon among prison officers. To my ears, 'the lockup' is the prison itself. You could also use 'the locking up [of the inmates]'.

4) He makes his own routine to avoid feeling to[o?] pressed upon. Correct? What does it mean ?
I don't know. Maybe 'to avoid feeling depressed/controlled, manipulated,put upon; You could also use a figurative noun - 'so as not to feel like a cog in some huge institutional machine', 'to avoid feeling like a pawn/puppet'
Many thanks
:up:

b
 

hela

Senior Member
Joined
Apr 12, 2004
Member Type
Student or Learner
Native Language
Arabic
Home Country
Tunisia
Current Location
Tunisia
Hello, Bob

Thanks again for your help :)
Do you think that "incarceration" or "internment" have the same meaning as "lockup" in the text = the shutting up of prisoners at a particular time of the day?
As for "banged up" in your exemple above, is it slang ?

Have a nice Sunday
 

Anglika

No Longer With Us
Joined
Oct 19, 2006
Member Type
Other
2) to submit / object to + obeying / obey ?
Do I always have to use the gerund in this case or can I also use the infinitive ?
Yes (I think - Anglika?), if you're using a verb. But as a gerund is a verbal noun you can also use a noun (or noun phrase) - 'submit to punishment', 'object to this sort of tax'

I agree with you on this.
 

hela

Senior Member
Joined
Apr 12, 2004
Member Type
Student or Learner
Native Language
Arabic
Home Country
Tunisia
Current Location
Tunisia
Sorry, I didn't quite understand. After "submit / object to" I can use both the infinitive and the gerund (v + ing) ?

Are there verb phrases that can only be used with the gerund ?

See you
 

BobK

Harmless drudge
Staff member
Joined
Jul 29, 2006
Member Type
English Teacher
Native Language
English
Home Country
UK
Current Location
UK
Hello, Bob

Thanks again for your help :)
Do you think that "incarceration" or "internment" have the same meaning as "lockup" in the text = the shutting up of prisoners at a particular time of the day?
As for "banged up" in your exemple above, is it slang ?

Have a nice Sunday

'Incarceration' and 'internment' are often, effectively, very similar. For me, 'incarceration' must be in a walled prison, whereas 'internment' could be in a fenced enclosure. In contrast, 'detention' need involve no physical restriction at all. There is also the word 'confinement', sometimes used of prisoners (especially in the phrase 'solitary confinement'), but also of new mothers (the time around the birth). There was a specific use of the word 'internment' in Northern Ireland, in which - I forget the details - suspected terrorists were detained either without trial or without a jury-trial; but I think the term 'internment' had been used in other contexts before it got those particular connotations (specific to Northern Ireland).

And 'banged up' is indeed slang - originally convicts' slang, but later adopted by politicians (in an effort to show sympathy/solidarity).

b
 

hela

Senior Member
Joined
Apr 12, 2004
Member Type
Student or Learner
Native Language
Arabic
Home Country
Tunisia
Current Location
Tunisia
Anglika, please

I didn't understand what exactly I should do after "submit / object to", use the gerund, the infinitive, both & in which cases?

Best regards
 

hela

Senior Member
Joined
Apr 12, 2004
Member Type
Student or Learner
Native Language
Arabic
Home Country
Tunisia
Current Location
Tunisia
Is there someone around who could answer my question above, please?
 

BobK

Harmless drudge
Staff member
Joined
Jul 29, 2006
Member Type
English Teacher
Native Language
English
Home Country
UK
Current Location
UK
Is there someone around who could answer my question above, please?

It's a long story, and I've a lesson to prepare. This is a good starting point though: verbs followed by gerunds and infinitives

For a Summer school last year I marked some work that I forgot to return. I attached to it this image - summing up just one case:

b
PS ...and if anyone knows Agnieszka Krasowska, would you tell I've got her homework? ;-)
 

Attachments

  • stop-plus-ing-or-inf.GIF
    stop-plus-ing-or-inf.GIF
    22.8 KB · Views: 8

BobK

Harmless drudge
Staff member
Joined
Jul 29, 2006
Member Type
English Teacher
Native Language
English
Home Country
UK
Current Location
UK
This may be a better one, if you can unzip it: ;-)

b
 

Attachments

  • stopped+gerundOrInfinitive.zip
    10 KB · Views: 7
Status
Not open for further replies.
Top