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Passive Voice in English and Spanish

3
votes

In English, the passive voice is frowned upon in use grin (I know I used it there - the irony is not lost). Is it the same in Spanish?

2449 views
updated NOV 12, 2009
posted by mctague

4 Answers

5
votes

Who frowns upon the passive voice in English? I believe it is still perfectly acceptable.

They built the house in 1945. The house was built in 1945. I'd say the passive voice is used more frequently in English in contexts like these.

I don't believe that the passive voice (ser+past participle) is frowned upon in Spanish either. It is just used less frequently because they have another way of expressing the passive voice that is more common (passive se).

updated NOV 12, 2009
edited by 0074b507
posted by 0074b507
In English, it frowned upon when you have a specfied subject . For example it is better he hit the ball instead of the ball was hit by him. - BellaMargarita, NOV 7, 2009
Then it's frowned upon in certain contexts. I can accept that. - 0074b507, NOV 7, 2009
3
votes

The passive voice IS frowned uppon in English. It's used alot colloquially, but in writing it is to be avoided. In Spanish, this is not the case. It is perfectly acceptable to use it. But as the previous response said, it's more common to use the reflexive passive.

updated NOV 12, 2009
posted by asdfghjkl4
I have a few hundred technical books in my office primarily written in the passive voice. - lorenzo9, NOV 7, 2009
3
votes

Who frowns upon the passive voice in English?

Strunk & White, among others.

updated NOV 12, 2009
posted by lorenzo9
who are they?? - 00494d19, NOV 7, 2009
2
votes

who are they??

Strunk wrote a book called The Elements of Style in 1918 which many consider to be the Bible of American grammar, and White revised it. We had to read it in school.

updated NOV 12, 2009
posted by lorenzo9
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