Tagged: compare contrast

Half-baked comparison

šŸ˜¦ Some Asians have less difficulty in intercultural communication.

flag-of-indonesiaĀ If your reader speaks Indonesian he will understand that you’re translatingĀ kurang.Ā 

Other readers willĀ begin to ask themselves:

Is he comparing Asians with some other group of people?
Which people?

Is he comparing difficulty in intercultural communication with some other kind of difficulty?
Which kind?

Is he comparing difficulty in intercultural communication with some other kind of communication?
Which kind?

What is he comparing?!

If you’re an IndonesianĀ translatingĀ kurang then you’re probably not comparing anything. You’re simply saying:

šŸ™‚ Some Asians find intercultural communication easy.

As a general rule, when you use comparative adjectives, include the thing or things that you’re comparing in the same sentence. If you’re not comparing things, then don’t use a comparative adjective.

@eapguru

The same blah

šŸ˜¦ Research has shown that men have the same kind of emotional problems with women.

A collocation issue: same…as (not same…with):

šŸ™‚ Research has shown that men have the same kind of emotional problems asĀ women.

(Notice the uncountable use of research).Ā 

Occasionally you will seeĀ same and with used together, for example “Women’s emotional problems are to some extentĀ influenced by hormones, and it’s the same with men.” ButĀ this is a more sophisticated form of comparison requiring a particular structureĀ for it to workĀ properly:

A is like this, and it is the same with B.

flag-of-indonesiaĀ For Indonesians translatingĀ sama dengan, start thinkingĀ same…as!

@eapguru

Comparing ‘like with like’

population

šŸ˜¦ The population of Japan is lower than Thailand.

Here is an example of not ‘comparing like with like’.

In the noun phrase ‘the population of Japan’, ‘population’ is the main noun. ‘Population’, which is aĀ mass of people, is said to be lower than ‘Thailand’, a land mass. This leaves the reader with an image of Thailand hovering up in the air, with the Japanese population some physical distance below it!

A mass of people is notĀ like a land mass.Ā In order to make sure that you’re ‘comparing like with like’, use a parallel structure:

šŸ™‚ The population of Japan is lower than the population of Thailand.

This may result in some repetition – ‘the population of’ is used twice. But don’t worry about repetition.Ā At least you’re ‘comparing like with like’.

Repetition can be avoided in this kind of comparative structure by substituting ‘that’ for part of the phrase that you’re trying not to repeat:

šŸ™‚ The population of Japan is lower than that of Thailand.

In this example, thatĀ replaces the population, but it can be used to replace any noun or noun phrase.

@eapguru