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英语写作提升的永远离不开:阅读与模仿

英文写作是一个创造和发现的过程,一般来说,它主要包含两个方面的能力:语言能力以及逻辑思维能力。

【英语写作】英语写作提升的永远离不开:阅读与模仿。(关注本站,持续更新基础英语考研资料,不定时发放英语大礼包)

英文写作是一个创造和发现的过程,一般来说,它主要包含两个方面的能力:语言能力以及逻辑思维能力。

其中,逻辑思维能力与每个人的人生经历、知识储备以及思维模式息息相关,这是一个循序渐进的发展过程。

相比逻辑思维能力,语言能力有着更为清晰的提升路径。语言能力提升的重点在于提升对词汇以及句子的运用能力。

词汇运用能力并不等同于词汇量,词汇运用能力的关键在于对词汇使用语境的精确理解。句子结构的运用能力也并不等同于语法知识,它的关键在于灵活应用各种句型准确地表达自己的思想。

怎样培养词汇运用能力以及句子结构的运用能力呢?对优秀句子和篇章进行模仿练习是一个很好的方法。

语言能力的提升并不是靠学习理论知识,而是大量的练习和模仿。回顾古今中外作家的写作经历,你会发现,人类写作历程堪称一部模仿史。无论是英语写作,还是汉语习作,一开始都离不开大量的阅读与模仿。通过对经典英语文章的模仿,我们能够学习怎样写出灵活地道的句子,更好地理解段落的层次性和逻辑性。

具体来讲,我们可以从句子和段落两个层次入手进行模仿训练。

对句子的模仿

句子是组成篇章的基本单位,只有先写好句子,才有可能写好文章。通过大量模仿经典英语的句式和句子结构,我们能够将其内化,并在写作时做到融会贯通。句型模仿训练的前提是寻找优秀的材料,并提取出相应的句型进行大量的训练。通过大量的模仿将这些优秀的句型变成我们表达的一部分。

目前对于句子模仿从易到难主要有两个方式:替换单词,提取句式

替换单词

将一个句子进行单词替换是最常见同时也是最简单的方法。举个例子,经济学人中有这样一个句子:

The hundred years since the Battle of Waterloo had not been entirely free of disaster—there had been a horrific civil war in America, some regional scraps in Asia, the Franco-Prussian war and the occasional colonial calamity. But continental peace had prevailed. Globalisation and new technology—the telephone, the steamship, the train—had knitted the world together. 

加粗的句子用在全球化相关话题里面不错吧?不过现在是21世纪了,可以将句子相应改一下:

The world is changing at a rapid pace. Globalisation and new technology—the internet, the airplane, the high-speed train—have knitted the world together.

又比如新概念英语4里面出现的一个句子:

As is so often pointed out, knowledge is a two-edged weapon which can be used equally for good or evil.

我们可以将其中的 knowledge 替换为那些具有两面性的事物,比如 nuclear technology / gene engineering / international trade 等:

As is so often pointed out, nuclear technology / gene engineering / international trade is a two-edged weapon which can be used equally for good or evil.

提取句式

提取句式是在单词替换的基础上发展而来,它的难度更高,但训练效果也会更好。在做此类练习时,我们要先对一个句子进行分析,从中提取出一个“通用模板”,然后根据这个模板进行造句练习。举个例子,有这样一个句子:

It is a disturbing omen for the Chinese economy. For all the talk of reform, many government officials still want to paper over bad loans. With credit going to keep moribund companies alive, China’s debt levels have soared even as growth has slowed. 

我们可以提取出这样的句型:For all the talk of …still…

比如可以说:

For all the talk of equal rights for women, gender discrimination is still rife in the workplace.

又比如这个句子:

China’s advance is all the more potent in the context of a series of disappointments for democrats since 2000. The first great setback was in Russia. After the fall of the Berlin Wall in 1989 the democratisation of the old Soviet Union seemed inevitable. 

提取出来的句型是  …is all the more potent in the context of …

我们可以写:

a) The appeal of online education is all the more potent in the context of soaring university tuition fees.

b) Regulating social media is all the more tricky in the context of widespread use of smartphones by which everyone is able to voice their opinions. 

还有这个例子:

So it came as a shock last month when a bill sprinted through the lower house of Congress, on the first day of a new session, that sets out to change the terms of their 30-year concessions after only 17 years.

我们可以提取出来的句型是 It came as a shock …when …

比如可以说:

It came as a shock last week when an explosion shaked New York City and injured 29 people.

对于下面这个句子:

To say that the “age of the grand hotel ran from 1860 to 1960” is to make it seem that Paris’s Grand had no antecedents.

我们可以提取出 To say that…is to make it seem that…这个类比句型,模仿写出:

To say that universities should merely provide students with employment skills is to make it seem that theoretical knowledge is of secondary importance. 

平时在阅读中要有意识地积累这类经典句式,并通过模仿造句地方式将它们内化,这样写出来的句子才会更加规范地道。

对段落的模仿

通过对文章经典段落的模仿,我们能够学习并熟悉段落的基本构架,段落展开方式,以及段落内部句子之间的承接等,在写作时能够更有效地组织自己的思想,写出层次鲜明、逻辑严谨的段落和文章。

举个例子,经济学人在一篇题为 The curious case of the fall in crime 的文章中,对当今西方社会犯罪率下降的原因有这样一个论述:

There is no single cause of the decline; rather, several have coincided. Western societies are growing older, and most crimes are committed by young men. Policing has improved greatly in recent decades, especially in big cities such as New York and London, with forces using computers to analyse the incidence of crime; in some parts of Manhattan this helped to reduce the robbery rate by over 95%. The epidemics of crack cocaine and heroin appear to have burnt out.

这个段落的逻辑非常清晰。开头第一句为主题句,后面三个句子进行展开:

1.Western societies are growing older, and most crimes are committed by young men.

2.Policing has improved greatly in recent decades.

3.The epidemics of crack cocaine and heroin appear to have burnt out.

我们可以对上面的段落框架进行模仿:

There is no single cause of childhood obesity; rather, several have coincided. Many children have been surrounded by fast food outlets selling unhealthy foods such as hamburgers and hot dogs, which contain a lot of calories, sugar and salt. Moreover, their parents are too busy climbing up the career ladder to keep an eye on their eating habits. Lack of exercise also does its bit. Most children spend too much time sitting in their room watching TV or playing computer games, and too little doing outdoor activities. 

有哪些适合模仿的材料?

材料质量的高低对于句子和段落模仿的效果会有很大的影响。用于模仿学习的材料要必须足够经典地道。这里推荐两种:

新概念英语3和4

作为影响一代人,经久不衰的英语学习教材,新概念英语3和新概念英语4中提供了非常多值得借鉴的经典句型以及段落篇章。新概念英语教材中类似 Life on a desert island, New Year resolutions, Knowledge and progress, Education 等课文都是极佳的模仿材料,如果能对这些文章做到熟练背诵并模仿,相信你的遣词造句水平会得到很大提升。

经济学人

为经济学人写作的记者们来自历史、哲学、法律等多个领域,不少人文化积淀深厚,是遣词造句以及逻辑论证的高手。他们写出来的文章可圈可点之处非常多,是很好的学习模仿材料。有志于提升英语写作水平的同学可以重点阅读模仿经济学人中这几个栏目的文章:Leaders, Business, Books and arts, Obituary

材料的选择在于精而不在多,认认真真将几十篇文章读懂读透,选取其中的优秀句型段落进行改写模仿,效果比囫囵吞枣读上几百篇文章要好很多。

对经典英语作品的模仿是走向高水平写作的必经之路。

我们可以从句子和篇章段落这两个角度入手,将提取出来的句型和段落结构与要写的话题结合起来进行模仿,以此来提升自己遣词造句以及逻辑思维能力。

除此之外,平时也要养成整理积累好词好句的习惯,建立自己的“语料库”,写作时才能做到厚积薄发。

英语写作提升的永远离不开:阅读与模仿

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