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Parallelism

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An overview of parallel structure in writing.

An overview of parallel structure in writing.

Published in: Education

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  • 1. Freewrite 15 minutes Any style Any form Any approach to the topic Topic: Small moments can be the most rewarding.
  • 2. Parallelism
  • 3. What is parallelism?
    • It is the goal of having closely related parts of a sentence fit harmoniously together.
    • Faulty parallelism:
    • Gillian wanted to know why I was late, why I hadn’t phoned, and did I even take it seriously?
    Proper parallelism: Gillian wanted to know why I was late, why I hadn’t phoned, and why I didn’t take it seriously. “ Formula”: why + I + verb
  • 4. Parallel in Form
    • Items in a series should be expressed in similar ways
    Faulty parallelism: Three ways to control stress are having an active social life, eating a balanced diet, and regular exercise.
  • 5.
    • Three ways to control stress are having an active social life, eating a balanced diet, and regular exercise.
    Three ways to control stress are having an active social life, eating a balanced diet, and getting regular exercise. “ Formula”: active verb form Three things to control stress are an active social life , a balanced diet , and regular exercise . Formula”: adjective + noun Three ways to control stress are to socialize often, to eat a balanced diet, and to exercise regularly. Formula”: infinitive verb form
  • 6. Parallel in Logic
    • Items in a series should be related in logic
    Faulty parallelism: Santa Claus is a man in a red suit, white beard, big belly, and eight flying reindeer.
  • 7.
    • Santa Claus is a man in a red suit, white beard, big belly, and eight flying reindeer.
    Santa Claus is a man in a red suit, with a white beard and big belly . He has eight flying reindeer. “ Formula”: separate items not closely enough related to be parallel in form
  • 8. Parallel by Relationship
    • Word groups paired by contrast, alternation, or another relationship are strongest when parallel in form
    Faulty parallelism: I thought I would save money but instead there was a financial loss.
  • 9.
    • I thought I would save money but instead there was a financial loss.
    I thought I would save money , but instead I lost it . “ Formula”: I + verb + noun
  • 10.
    • The advantages of public transit are low fare and the environment is saved.
    Public transit helps us to save money and to protect the environment . “ Formula”: infinitive verb form + noun Public transit saves money and protects the environment . “ Formula”: present tense verb form + noun
  • 11.
    • What fascinates me about New York is the size of the buildings and the people.
    What fascinates me about New York is the people and the size of the buildings. “ Formula”: noun
  • 12. Practice
    • Handout
  • 13. Practice
    • Go back to your freewrite and make it parallel wherever possible.
    • Highlight sentences that are parallel.
    • Choose two sentences to explain, at the end, how they are parallel (the “formula”)