The link below is to an article that takes a look at the various forms of copyright.
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The link below is to an article that takes a look at the various forms of copyright.
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Young children often write as they speak. But the way we speak and the way we write isn’t quite the same. When we speak, we often use many clauses (which include groups of words) in a sentence. But when we write – particularly in academic settings — we should use fewer clauses and make the meaning clear with fewer words and clauses than if we were speaking.
To be able to do this, it’s useful to understand specific written language tools. One effective tool in academic writing is called grammatical metaphor.
The kind of metaphor we are more familiar with is lexical metaphor. This is a variation in meaning of a given expression.
For example, the word “life” can be literally understood as the state of being alive. But when we say “food is life”, metaphorically it means food is vital.
Grammatical metaphor is different. The term was coined by English-born Australian linguistics professor Michael Halliday. He is the father of functional grammar which underpins the Australian Curriculum: English.
Halliday’s concept of grammatical metaphor is when ideas that are expressed in one grammatical form (such as verbs) are expressed in another grammatical form (such as nouns). As such, there is a variation in the expression of a given meaning.
For example, “clever” in “she is clever” is a description or an adjective. Using nominalisation, “clever” becomes “cleverness” which is a noun. The clause “she is clever” can be turned into “her cleverness” which is a noun group.
“Sings” in “he sings”, which is a doing term or a verb, can be expressed by “his singing”, in which “singing” is a noun.
In these examples, the adjective “clever” and the verb “sings” are both expressed in nouns — “cleverness” and “singing”.
Grammatical metaphor, which is often done through nominalisation like in the examples above, typically features in academic, bureaucratic and scientific writing. Here are four reasons it’s important.
Grammatical metaphor helps shorten explanations and lessen the number of clauses in a sentence. This is because more information can be packed in noun groups rather than spread over many clauses.
Below is a sentence with three clauses:
When humans cut down forests (clause one), land becomes exposed (2) and is easily washed away by heavy rain (3).
With grammatical metaphor or nominalisation, the three clauses become just one.
Deforestation causes soil erosion.
“When humans cut down forests” (a clause) becomes a noun group – “deforestation”. The next two clauses (2 and 3) are converted into another noun group – “soil erosion”.
Grammatical metaphor helps show that one thing causes another within one clause, rather than doing it between several clauses. We needed three clauses in the first example to show one action (humans cutting down forests) may have caused another (land being exposed and being washed away by heavy rain).
But with grammatical metaphor, the second version realises the causal relationship between two processes in only one clause. So it becomes more obvious.
Below are two sentences.
The government decided to reopen the international route between New Zealand and Hobart. This is a significant strategy to boost Tasmania’s economy.
Using grammatical metaphor, the writer can change the verb “decided” to the noun “decision” and the two sentences can become one.
The decision to reopen the international route between New Zealand and Hobart is a significant strategy to boost Tasmania’s economy.
This allows the writer to expand the amount and density of information they include. It means they can make further comment about the decision in the same sentence, which helps build a logical and coherent text. And then the next sentence can be used to say something different.
Using grammatical metaphor also creates distance between the writer and reader, making the tone formal and objective. This way, the text establishes a more credible voice.
It becomes common across subject areas in the upper primary years. And it is intimately involved in the increasing use of technical and specialised knowledge of different disciplines in secondary school.
But the term “grammatical metaphor” is not explicitly used in the Australian Curriculum: English and is less known in school settings. As a result, a vast majority of school teachers might not be aware of the relationship between grammatical metaphor and effective academic writing, as well as how grammatical metaphor works in texts.
This calls for more attention to professional learning in this area for teachers and in Initial Teacher Education (ITE) programs. This will help equip student teachers and practising teachers with pedagogical content knowledge to teach and prepare their students to write effectively in a variety of contexts.
In a new series, writers pay tribute to fictional detectives on page and on screen.
Trixie Belden, girl detective, does not rank in the world’s pantheon of cool sleuths. She’s unlikely to appear in a Coen brothers’ film (à la Marge Gunderson in Fargo (1996)), for example. Nor did she issue from the pen of hardboiled, mid-century crime writer Chester Himes.
Instead, she was the creation of Western Publishing — the American maker of Little Golden Books who wanted to market low-cost mysteries and adventures to children after the second world war — and Julie Campbell, a writer and literary agent who responded to their call.
Campbell wrote the first six books in the series from 1948 to 1958. The rest, some 30 or so, were composed by ghostwriters between 1961 and 1986 and published under the pseudonym, Kathryn Kenny.
As a child, I had no inkling of this origin story. So far as I knew, Trixie Belden was from Crabapple Farm, Sleepyside, in the Hudson River Valley. She had three brothers (two older, one younger) and her best friend was Honey Wheeler, met in the original book, The Secret of the Mansion (1948), which I read more than 30 years after it was first published.
Honey was rich and beautiful. So was Diana, who turned up a bit later in the series and was memorably said to have violet eyes. Trixie was neither of these things.
In the first book, at the age of 13, she found her detective vocation by uncovering the fortune of a deceased recluse. She also met its beneficiary. Jim Frayne, a runaway with a brutal stepfather, would become Honey’s adopted brother, Trixie’s blossoming love interest, and a member of the Bob-Whites, Trixie’s club of friends who formed the support cast for the Belden-Wheeler Detective Agency.
Whether searching for a lost weather vane or tracking down an arsonist, Trixie was at the centre of all the mysteries, which I avidly read and reread.
My attraction to Trixie was not a matter of projection or identification; my world was clearly unlike hers.
I did not anticipate that I would come across a rabid dog; rescue a pilot from a burning aeroplane; or have to suck blood from my brother’s toe to prevent his poisoning by a copperhead. (And that was all in only the first book of the series).
Trixie was obsessed with horses, I was more interested in her setter dog, Reddy. Trixie was terrible at maths, which had yet to cause me trouble.
The differences between us didn’t matter so much as our shared interest in “running all the information through [our] mental computer” (from 1977’s The Mystery of the Uninvited Guest). I wanted to figure things out, just like Trixie. She nonetheless had many amateur sleuth competitors on my primary school reading list.
I had the non-fiction Detective’s Handbook out on constant library loan. It was instructive in disguise-wearing and decoding. Then there was Enid Blyton’s The Famous Five and The Secret Seven, and also Nancy Drew.
The child-groups constituting the two former titles were like the Bob-Whites insofar as they also formed detective communities. Although to my mind they put inordinate value on passwords, badges and boarding school holidays.
Nancy Drew was undeniably admirable in her older sophistication but a little too polished for my still-developing taste. She was confident and self-contained, which is surely why Hollywood created movie versions of her and why the intrusion of the Hardy Boys franchise into her narrative made no sense to me. It wasn’t like she needed any help.
By contrast, Trixie Belden was more accommodating and needing of others. She sometimes said mean things, and would then regret them and apologise.
She knew she wasn’t as pretty as Honey or Diana and, while that worried her a little, she shrugged it off and had far more interesting existential doubts. In the 17th book, The Mystery of the Uninvited Guest, she speaks of feeling as if she were inside a glass box:
All the people of the world march past me … I know that when I can tell just one person who I am, the glass will melt and I can join the parade.
I’m sure at the age of eight or nine I had only a vague idea of what she meant, but it sounded a lot like what growing up was all about.
Sticky situations, mistaken identities and stolen jewels were always worked out, revealed or returned to their rightful owners in the end. And the motives behind these events weren’t always nefarious.
Reassurance was offered in the sympathetic knowledge that circumstances, rather than moral flaws, can bring about bad deeds, and that detection itself trod a fine ethical line.
Trixie’s conscience was pricked by her practices of eavesdropping, surveillance and occasional breaking-and-entering. At times she determined that the status quo, which her detective work ostensibly upheld, was not right.
Maths might have stumped her, but as Honey appreciatively recognised of her friend:
Trixie was a down-to-earth person, keenly aware of information gathered by all of her five senses — plus that extra sense called horse sense.
She might not be cool, today or then, but — well-surpassing her intended pulp-fiction status — Trixie Belden was smart and sensitive in the ways that mattered.