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  • Essay Writing

  • Assignment: Read examples of the essays below, try to define which of the types each of them belongs to. ON BEGINNING

  • Методичка Ермаковой И. В. к Keep Up. Учебное пособие по курсу Анализ текста для студентов специальности Переводчик в сфере профессиональной коммуникации

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    НазваниеУчебное пособие по курсу Анализ текста для студентов специальности Переводчик в сфере профессиональной коммуникации
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    Lesson 6

    1. Choose the proper word:

    to occur / to chance / to happen / to befall

    1. It was the worst thing that had ever … to him. 2. Storms often … in this part of the ocean in winter. 3. This particular conversation was reported to have … yesterday at 5 p.m. 4. He wondered how they could justify this new relationship to his family, should they … to hear about it. 5. The day .. to fall on the anniversary of his wife’s death. 6. She realized that some crushing misadventure had … her son. 7. All memorable events … in morning time and in a morning atmosphere. 8. It’s so … that they had met before.

    un(comfortable) / in(convenient)

    1. It is … to phone him so late. 2. The beds in this hotel are very …, soft and wide. 3. Sit down and make yourself … . 4. Come whenever it is … for you. 5. Martin Eden felt … in his new suit. 6. We have to choose a day for the excursion that is … for everybody. 7. I don’t think it is … to ask him to lend us some money, after all he hardly knows us.

    1. a) Supply the correct item for each situation.

    M o d e l: Student 1: What would you say about a sofa that is soft and cosy?

    Student 2: It is a comfortable sofa.

    Student 2: What would you say about an instrument that can be used in a number of operations?

    Student 3: It is a convenient instrument.
    W h a t w o u l d y o u s a y?
    1. about an hour (time) of the day that was chosen to suit you? 2. about a place that was chosen because of its suitable location? 3. about shoes that cause no pain, that do not pinch? 4. about a desk that has a number of handy drawers? 5. about a can opener that works quickly and easily? 6. about trousers that do not cause discomfort, that are not tight? 7. about a large and spacious wall closet? 8. about an ironing board that is easy to use? 9. about a hard bed? 10. about a cosy armchair? 11. about a good spring mattress?

      1. Answer the following questions using “(un) comfortable or (in)convenient

    M o d e l: Student 1: Why don’t you wear your white shoes?

    Student 2: Because they are uncomfortable.

    Student 2: Why don’t you ring him up from your office?

    Student 3: Because it is inconvenient.

    1. Why do you keep your dictionaries on the desk and not in the bookcase? 2. Why did you sell your kitchen stools? 3. Why do people prefer to travel by metro? 4. Why does your father always wear this old jacket?

    5. Why don’t you study at home; why do you go to the library?

    1. Study the phrases with “mind”. Use them in sentences of your own.

    1. He showed great presence of mind in handling the situation. 2. I very much feel like giving the fellow a piece of my mind. 3. To my mind a job well started is half done. 4. They say that great minds run in the same channels. 5. It takes him hours to make up his mind about the simplest things. 6. She felt disturbed and found it difficult to keep her mind on her work. 7. I do hope you keep in mind my advice. 8. You don’t look the thing this morning. What’s on your mind? 9. In discussions of this sort you should always keep an open mind. 10. First she thought she’d wear blue but then changed her mind in favor of pink. 11. Out of sight, out of mind. 12. You must admit that you have failed. The sooner you make up your mind to it, the better. 13. You’ve had time enough to decide what you want. Don’t you know your own mind? 14. He seems to have set his mind on becoming an architect.
    Lesson 7

    1. Study the phrases with “time”. Use them in sentences of your own.

    1. He took his time over the answer. He was afraid to say the wrong thing. 2. I didn’t get to the station in time to catch the six o’clock train.

    3. You’ll forget about it in time. 4. The trouble with names has put me in difficulties from time to time. 5. He was all the time waiting for something to happen. 6. The doctor encouraged his patient, though all the time he knew there was hardly any hope for her. 7. Now that you mention her name, I know who she is, though I didn’t recognize her at the time. 8. The boy was very slow in answering my questions. He must have been playing for time. 9. At times she would be inattentive and forgetful. 10. I should advise you to leave things as they are for the time being. 11. The plane arrived on time.

    12. We were to enter the room one at a time.

    1. Translate the following into English using “time” or phrases with “time.

    1. Не торопись с ответом, обдумай все как следует. 2. Сейчас не время говорить об этом. 3. У него нет ни минуты свободного времени. 4. Он все схватывает очень быстро. Ему достаточно сказать что-нибудь один раз. 5. Когда вы, наконец, научитесь приходить вовремя? 6. Он один шел не в ногу. 7. Дети хлопали в такт музыке. 8. Время от времени я беру книги из его библиотеки. 9. Сейчас как раз самое время пересадить цветы в почву. 10. Хватит топтаться на месте! 11. Всех этих вещей хватит не только на мой век, но и на век моих детей.

    12. Прошлый раз я тебе забыла передать приглашение от Ивановых провести воскресенье у них на даче. 13. Когда вы в последний раз обсуждали эту проблему? Я надеюсь, что она была полностью решена и нам уже не придется к ней возвращаться. 14. Времянеждет. Нельзя ли побыстрей?
    3. Study the italicized words, discriminate between the shades of difference in their usage or in their meaning. Translate the sentences into Russian.
    A. 1. She made no special effort to entertain her guests but they seemed to be happy enough. 2. The story amused us greatly. 3. He was charmed by the house, the beautiful garden and, above all, by the landlady, a comely old woman with a delightful sense of humour. 4. There was no pleasing the woman.

    B. 1. He said he would have a snack in town. 2. We invited our neighbour to take potluck with us. 3. If you want to stay healthy, you must take your meals regularly. 4. She’d only had a bite earlier in the day and now she felt terribly hungry. 5. The repast over, the ladies rose to go to the drawing-room. 6. There would be no dinner, only refreshment at the party.

    C. 1. The party trudged along in the heavy snow. 2. He walked up the street with a brisk jaunty step. 3. I could hear him pacing up and down the room. 4. The boy sauntered up, his hands in his pockets, his head cocked on one side. 5. He stalked out in a passion. 6. They strolled with the other holiday-makers along the embankment. 7. He strutted about proud as a peacock.

    D. 1. As the English put it, enough is as good as a feast. 2. A person whose needs are satisfied has enough, but when his needs are supplied he has sufficient. 3. Three meals a day are sufficient, but not enough for some people.


    A summary (sometimes called a précis) is a concise presentation that gives key information about an article, an event, a TV program or a movie, or an oral presentation. Effective summaries help a reader or listener quickly understand the main purpose, content, and structure of an original work.

    Summaries take many forms and appear in a variety of situations. They can be brief (as short as one sentence) or lengthy (several pages long). If it is a written work, it is approximately one third the length of the text. Summaries may be oral or written. Whether a summary is based on a book, a videotape, a lecture, or a personal experience, the basic goal is the same: to compress a broad range of information into a few well-chosen words.

    Summarizing involves a combination of reading, study and writing skills. To write an effective summary, you must identify the main ideas and key details in the original work. You must also translate the original information into your own words. Putting complex information into your own words helps you understand and remember the main ideas of the original work.

    If you are asked to write a summary of a written work, begin by previewing the text. To preview an article, look at the title, subtitle, introductory and final paragraphs, headings and subheadings. To preview a book, look at the title, table of contents, preface, first and last chapters, chapter openers and summaries, and any photographs and illustrations.

    After previewing the text, read the work thoroughly. As you read, jot down or highlight main ideas and key details. Pay special attention to topic sentences, defined terms, examples, and lists of items (called enumerations); these features often contain important information.

    As soon as you finish reading, write a sentence that expresses the central point of the work.

    If you are summarizing a written work, such as a book or an article, your first sentence should identify the author, title, publisher, date of publication, and central point of the work.

    Assume that readers know little if anything about the original work you are summarizing. Always include enough information to convey the central point and main ideas.

    Depending on the content and on the tone of the original work, the tone you adopt may be informal or very formal. If you summarize a humorous article, you should use an informal tone to indicate to the reader that the article was humorous. Similarly, if you summarize a serious article, you should use a factual, objective tone to reflect the substance of the original work.

    The language you use for a summary should reflect but not copy or imitate the wording of the original. The wording you use should always be your own. If you use another writer’s words and try to pass them off as your own, you will be plagiarizing. If you quote directly from the original source, do so sparingly. Don’t use more than two quotations in a single paragraph of your summary.

    To sum it up, a summary is a shorter version of a text which:

    1. contains the main idea or topic of the text;

    2. contains the important supporting details of the text ( A supporting detail is a fact or example that helps to explain the main idea);

    3. doesn’t contain any of the reader’s opinions (whereas an essay assumes an individual interpretation of facts, giving a writer a chance of self-expression);

    4. is approximately one third the length of the text;

    5. contains no introductions or conclusions;

    6. should not contain illustrative details, ideas expressed in a figurative language, repetitions, colorless words like: character, nature, case, manner, kind, sort, etc.

    E.g. “In spite of the fact” is substituted by “Although”, “Of a courageous character” by “Courageous”, etc.

    1. sentences must be re-phrased and re-arranged.

    Essay Writing
    AN ESSAY is a piece of writing, usually short and in prose, on any subject. It usually assumes an individual interpretation of facts, giving the writer a chance of self-expression. According to the subject matter and the treatment it receives, essay may be divided into three main types: narrative, descriptive and reflective. The division is by no means clear-cut because most essays have features characteristic of not one particular type, but of several.

    a) A narrative essay is a description of happenings as they follow one another. It is the easiest to write because the material is arranged according to the actual course of events; one knows where to start and what to do next, each paragraph being devoted to one particular episode or group of episodes.

    E.g. You have decided to write about a hitch-hiking holiday. It is advisable first to write down a plan with paragraph headings: 1. What made my friend and me decide on a hitch-hiking holiday. 2. Preparations. 3. The holidays: a) setting off, b)the most interesting, amusing or memorable event: 1), 2), 3) … 4. Home again. Some thoughts on the advantages of such a holiday.

    As an essay rarely belongs to one type only, in addition to describing events in chronological order, you are expected to express your views on the subject as well. Your narrative will also include short descriptions of people and places. For example, you might want to describe an impressive view, a lively scene or a person you met during your holiday. But your descriptions and reflections should not occupy too much space in relation to the rest of the essay. Take care to preserve the necessary balance.

    Narrative essays bear a close resemblance to those short stories in which the author describes events as he himself has experienced them. In fact, practically all narrative essays could be classed as short stories.

    b) A descriptive essay describes people and places at rest. It is more difficult to write because the order in which your ideas follow one another is determined not by the sequence of events, but rather by certain qualities of your ideas and the logical connection between them. You must try to give your essay a clear and logical shape, whether you start from the general and work towards particular or vice versa.

    c) Reflective and argumentative essays are slightly different. The first one is primarily an exercise in contemplation upon any given subject, the second - an exercise testing your ability to discuss a problem, to argue for or against a proposition. In the first you rely more on your imagination, in the second – on general knowledge.

    Compared with the descriptive and the narrative essays, these are more difficult to write, not only it is more difficult to arrange one’s ideas logically, but also because one has to devote more thought and time to the collection of ideas relevant to the subject. Here a plan is essential. The best way is probably to jot down ideas as they come into your head. Then you can try to group them together and arrange them in the order best suited to your purpose.

    You can write reflective essays developing the thoughts through analysis, i.e. you start by breaking out the subject into parts, then group the various ideas together and finally arrange them in a suitable order. The greatest amount of space is generally allotted to the description of the author’s own thoughts, feelings, behaviour, etc.

    Another type of organization is development by contrast. You organize your pros and cons in separate sections. The main problem in this case is that in the second part you have to remind your readers occasionally about the items contained in the first part. You may contrast pairs instead of sections throughout the essay.

    Development by contrast is the most forceful means of writing an argumentative essay.


    Read examples of the essays below, try to define which of the types each of them belongs to.

    (By J.B.Priestly)
    How difficult it is to make a beginning. I speak of essay-writing, an essentially virtuous practice, and not of breaking the ten commandments. It is much easier to begin, say, a review or an article than it is to begin an essay, for with the former you attach yourself to something outside yourself, you have an excuse for writing and therefore have more courage. If it is a review that has to be written, well, there, waiting for you, inviting your comment, is the book. Similarly with an article, you have your subject, something that everybody is excited about, and thus you know what is expected of you and you can take up your pen with a light heart. But to have nothing to cling hold of, to have no excuse for writing at all, to be compelled to spin everything out of oneself, to stand naked and shivering in the very first sentence one puts down, is clearly a very different matter, and this is the melancholy situation in which the essayist always finds himself. It is true that he need not always be melancholy; if he is full of himself, brimming over with bright talk, in a mood to take the whole world into his confidence, the essayist will find his task a very pleasant one indeed, never to be exchanged for such drudge’s work as reviews and articles; and he will step briskly on to the stage and posture in the limelight without a tremor. But such moments are rare, and the essayist at ordinary times, though he would eagerly undertake to defend his craft, cannot quite rid himself of the feeling that there is something both absurd and decidedly impudent in this business of talking about oneself for money; this feeling haunts the back of his mind like some gibbering spectre, and it generally produces one of three effects. According to his temperament, it will prevent him from doing anything at all that particular day or perhaps any other day, or it will allow him to write a few brilliant opening sentences and then shut up, or it will keep him from making a start until the last possible moment.

    For my own part, I am one of those who find it difficult to begin; I stand on the brink for hours, hesitating to make the plunge; I will do anything but the work in hand. This habit is certainly a nuisance, but perhaps it is not quite so intolerable as that of some other persons, men of my acquaintance, who fall into the second category mentioned above and always find themselves making dashing openings and then coming to a stop. They will stare at what they have written , well pleased with it as an opening, and then discover that the flow has ceased, and horrible hours will pass, and perhaps many more dashing openings will have been made, before any real progress will have come about and their essay taken some sort of shape. Such writers seem to me even more unfortunate than I am, for I do at least go forward once I have made a beginning; as soon as I have summoned up courage to ring the bell I am at least admitted into the house of my choice, and am not, like these others, left kicking my heels in the vestibules of half a dozen houses perhaps without ever seeing the interior of any of them.
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