Development by Definition and a Combination of Methods

Development by Definition and a
Combination of Methods
Development by Definition
• When we write something, sometimes, we
have to define a word, a term or concept
which is unfamiliar to most readers or may
have many different explanations to avoid
confusion or misunderstanding.
Generally speaking, there are three
basic ways to define a word or a
• To give a synonym
• To use a sentence (often with an
attributive clause)
• To write a paragraph or even an essay
1 To give a synonym
An erase is a rubber.
To mend means to repair.
A fellow is a man or a boy.
2 To use a sentence
• Examples:
• 1)Ink is a color water which we use for
• 2) Psychology is the scientific study of the
mind and how it influence behavior.
• 3)A sadist is a person who gets pleasure
from hurting others.
To write a paragraph
• Look at the example on page 106.
• The analysis:
In this paragraph, “a liberated woman”
is defined in many aspects, such as her
work, the controlling of her life, her
marriage status, her age and the principles
of her action.
Some principles we should observe
when we give a definition
• A We should avoid circular definition.
What does “ circular definition’ mean? It
means to define a word or a term in terms of
themselves. When we use circular definition, our
understanding of the word can not be improved
at all.
• Examples:
• 1) Biochemistry is the study of biochemistry.
• 2) Democracy is the democratic process.
B We should avoid long list of
synonyms if the term to be defined
is an abstract one.(Page106)
C We should avoid loaded definitions.
“ Loaded” means having more meaning
than you realize at first and intended to
make you think in a particular
Development by a Combination of
How many methods have we learnt to
develop a paragraph?
we have learnt up to nine methods. They
are to develop by time, by process, by space,
by examples and generalization, by
comparison and contrast, by cause and effect,
by classification and by definition.
Sometimes, only one of them is used in a
paragraph, but often two or more are used in
the same paragraph.
Americans use the verb “ to starve” in the literal sense of “to die
of hunger” and in an exaggerated sense meaning simply “to be very
hungry”. Most British people also use the word this way. In Yorkshire,
however, people use the verb “to starve” to mean “to die of cold”. A
Yorkshire is a thus very puzzled when someone asking directions to
a restaurant says “I am starving”. For several centuries after the
Germanic language split into Icelandic, Norwegian, Swedish, Danish,
English, Dutch and German, the Germanic word which had carried a
general meaning “to die” kept that meaning in each of the derived
language. In modern German , “ sterben ” still means simply “to die”.
In southern England ,however, the meaning of the word became
more specific. Perhaps death from hunger was so common that a
specific word was needed to talk about it. The meaning of the word
also became more specific in the northern part of England, in
Yorkshire, a farming area where death from cold may have been
more common than death from hunger. Whatever the reasons for
the change of meaning, the verb “to starve” has a curious history.
• Questions:
• 1 How many methods are used in this
paragraph? What are they?
(3. Development by time ,by
classification, by cause and effect.)
• 2 Find out the expressions which
indicates the development by classification,
by time and by cause and effect.
• Answers:
• 1) By classification: Classification by space is
used in this paragraph. Expressions are:
Americans, in Southern England, in the northern
part of England, in Yorkshire.
• 2) By time. Expressions are :For several
centuries after, in modern German.
• 3) By cause and effect. Expressions
are :Perhaps death from hunger was so
common that a specific word was needed to talk
about it.
By Sophie of class 1