#5. Пишем правильно. Излагаем мысли в утвердительной форме (позитивном ключе) – Put Statements in Positive Form

Put Statements in Positive Form – Используем утвердительную форму.

Make definite assertions. Avoid tame, colorless, hesitating, non-committal language. Use the word not as a means of denial or in antithesis, never as a means of evasion.

He was not very often on time. He usually came late.
He did not think that studying Latin was much use. He thought the study of Latin useless.
The Taming of the Shrew is rather weak in spots. Shakespeare does not portray Katharine as a very admirable character, nor does Bianca remain long in memory as an important character in Shakespeare’s works. The women in The Taming of the Shrew are unattractive. Katharine is disagreeable, Bianca insignificant.

The last example, before correction, is indefinite as well as negative. The corrected version, consequently, is simply a guess at the writer’s intention.

All three examples show the weakness inherent in the word not. Consciously or unconsciously, the reader is dissatisfied with being told only what is not; he wishes to be told what is. Hence, as a rule, it is better to express even a negative in positive form.

not honest dishonest
not important trifling
did not remember forgot
did not pay any attention to ignored
did not have much confidence in distrusted

The antithesis of negative and positive is strong:

Not charity, but simple justice.

Not that I loved Caesar less, but Rome the more.

Negative words other than not are usually strong:

The sun never sets upon the British flag.


 

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