Showing posts with label rhetoric. Show all posts
Showing posts with label rhetoric. Show all posts

Tuesday, 25 February 2014

Sport, Music and Composition


Quintilian, a highly esteemed Latin rhetorician, argues that composition involves learning a skill. He compares composition with the craft of the musician and with the skills of the sportsman. In his larger project, writing is linked with civic participation, with the arts of cultivation, and with the progress from the natural savage to a state of civilization. Writing should aim to flow harmoniously.

Quintilian's Institutes of the Orator, Book 9 (trans. charles Rollin, 1774), 143-146.

I well know, that there are some, who will not allow of any care in composition, contending that our words as they flow by chance, how uncouth soever they may sound, are not only more natural, but likewise more manly. If what first sprung from nature, indebted for nothing to care and industry, be only what they deem natural, I allow that the art of oratory in this respect has no pretensions to that quality. 

For it is certain that the first men did not speak according to the exactness of the rules of composition; neither were they acquainted with the art of preparing by an exordium, informing by a narration, proving by arguments, and moving by passions. They were therefore deficient in all these particulars, and not in composition only; and if they were not allowed to make any alterations for the better, of course they should not have exchanged their cottages for houses, nor their coverings of skins for more decent apparel, nor the mountains and forests in which they ranged, for the abode of cities in which they enjoy the comforts of social intercourse. And indeed, what art do we find coeval with the world; and what is it of which the value is not enhanced by improvement? Why do we restrain the luxuriancy of our vines? Why do we dig about them? Why do we grub up the bramble-bushes in our fields? Yet the earth produces them. Why do we tame animals? Yet are they born with untractable dispositions. Rather let us fay, that that is very natural, which nature permits us to meliorate in her handy-work,

Now, how can a jumble of uncouth words be more manly than a manner of expression that is well joined and properly placed? If some authors enervate the things they treat of, by straining them into certain soft and lascivious measures, we must not hence judge that this is the fault of composition. By how much the current of rivers is swift and impetuous in a free and open channel, than amidst the obstruction of rocks breaking and struggling against the flow of their waters; by so much an oration that is properly connected, flows with its whole might, and is far preferable to one that is craggy and desultory by frequent interruptions. 

Why then should it be thought that strength and beauty are things-incompatible, when on the contrary, nothing has its just value without art, and embellishment always attends.on it? Do not we observe the javelin that has been cleverly whirled about, dart through the air with the best effect; and in managing a bow and arrow, is not the beauty of the attitude so much the more graceful, as the aim is more unerring? In feats of arms, and in all the exercises of the palæstra, is not his attitude best calculated for defence or offence, who uses a certain art in all his motions, and keeps to a certain position of the feet? 

Composition therefore in my opinion, is to thoughts and words, what the dexterous management of a bow or string may be for directing the aim of missive weapons; and I may say the most learned are persuaded, that it is greatly conducive not only to pleasure, but also to make an impression on minds. First, because it is scarce possible that a thing should affect the heart, which begins by grating upon the ear. Secondly, because we are naturally affected by harmony. Otherwise, the sounds of musical instruments, though they express no words, would not excite in us so great a variety of pleasing emotions. In sacred canticles, some airs are for elating the heart into raptures, others to replace the mind in its former tranquility. The sound of a trumpet is not the same, when it is the signal for a general engagement, and when on a defeat, it implores the conqueror's mercy, neither is it the same when an army marches up to give battle, and when it is intent intent on retreating.

It was a common practice with the Pythagoric philosophers, to awake, at uprising, their minds by an air on the lyre, in order to make them more alert for action; and they had recourse to the same musical entertainment for disposing them to sleep, believing it to be a means to allay the relicks of all such tumultuous thoughts as might have any way ruffled them in the course of the day. If then so great a force resides in musical strains and modulations, what must it be with eloquence, the music of which is a speaking harmony? 

As much indeed as it is essential for a thought to be expressed in suitable words, so much is it for the fame words to be disposed in a proper order by composition, that they may flow and end harmoniously. Some things of little consequence in their import, and requiring but a moderate degree of elocution, are commendable only by this perfection; and there are others, which appear expressed with so much force, beauty, and sweetness, that if the order they stand in should be changed or disturbed, all force, beauty, and sweetness would vanish from them.


Dr Ian McCormick served as Professor in the Arts at the University of Northampton. 

His most recent book is The Art of Connection. [Quibble Academic, 2013]

Friday, 21 February 2014

Sentence Connection and Transition: a bibliography





Today I am sharing the FURTHER READING list published in my book The Art of Connection: the Social Life of Sentences (Quibble Academic 2013):

Amidon, Arlene. "Children's understanding of sentences with contingent relations: Why are temporal and conditional connectives so difficult?" Journal of Experimental Child Psychology 22.3 (1976): 423-437.

Astington, Janet Wilde, Janette Pelletier, and Bruce Homer. "Theory of mind and epistemological development: The relation between children's second-order false-belief understanding and their ability to reason about evidence." New Ideas in Psychology 20.2 (2002): 131-144.

Bakewell, Sarah. How to Live: A Life of Montaigne in one question and twenty attempts at an answer. Vintage, 2011.

Baker, Linda. "Comprehension monitoring: Identifying and coping with text confusions." Journal of Literacy Research 11.4 (1979): 365-374.

Bates, Elisabeth, Philip S. Dale, and Donna Thal. "Individual differences and their implications for theories of language development." The Handbook of Child Language (1995): 96-151.

Beilin, Harry, and Barbara Lust. "A study of the development of logical and linguistics connectives: Linguistics data." Studies in the cognitive basis of language development (1975): 76-120.

Bizzell, Patricia, and Bruce Herzberg, eds., The rhetorical tradition: Readings from classical times to the present. Boston, MA: Bedford Books of St. Martin's Press, 1990.

Bloom, Lois, et al. "Complex sentences: Acquisition of syntactic connectives and the semantic relations they encode." Journal of child language 7.02 (1980): 235-261.

Bloom, Lois. Language development from two to three. Cambridge University Press, (1993).

Bondi, Marina. "Connectives." The Encyclopedia of Applied Linguistics.

Braine, Martin, and Barbara Rumain. "Logical reasoning." Handbook of child psychology 3 (1983): 263-340.

Braunwald, Susan R. "The development of connectives." Journal of pragmatics 9.4 (1985): 513-525.

Braunwald, Susan R. "The development of because and so: Connecting language, thought, and social understanding." Studies in the production and comprehension of text, Mahwah (NJ): Lawrence Erlbaum Assoc (1997): 121-137.

Brostoff, Anita. "Coherence:" Next to" Is Not" Connected to"." College composition and communication 32.3 (1981): 278-294.

Byrnes, James P., and Willis F. Overton. "Reasoning about logical connectives: A developmental analysis." Journal of Experimental Child Psychology 46.2 (1988): 194-218.

Clancy, Patricia, T. Iacobsen, and Marilyn Silva. The Acquisition of Conjunction: A Cross-Linguistic Study. Papers and Reports on Child Language Development. ERIC Clearinghouse, 1976.

Clark, Eve V. First language acquisition. Cambridge University Press, 2009.

Crewe, William J. "The illogic of logical connectives." ELT journal 44.4 (1990): 316-325.

Crowhurst, Marion. "Cohesion in argument and narration at three grade levels." Research in the Teaching of English (1987): 185-201.

Crusius, Timothy W., and Carolyn E. Channell. The aims of argument: A rhetoric and reader. Mayfield Publishing Company, 1998.

Cudd, Evelyn T., and Leslie Roberts. "Using writing to enhance content area learning in the primary grades." The Reading Teacher 42.6 (1989): 392-404.

Davies, Peter, Becky Shanks, and Karen Davies. "Improving narrative skills in young children with delayed language development." Educational Review 56.3 (2004): 271-286.

Degand, Liesbeth, Nathalie Lefèvre, and Yves Bestgen. "The impact of connectives and anaphoric expressions on expository discourse comprehension." Document Design 1.1 (1999): 39-51.

Deleuze, Gilles, and Félix Guattari. Capitalisme et schizophrénie. Vol. 1. Les Editions de minuit, 1972.

Deleuze, Gilles, and Felix Guattari. Anti-oedipus. Continuum International Publishing Group, 2004.

Deleuze, Gilles, and Felix Guattari. A thousand plateaus. Trans. Brian Massumi. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 1987.

Derrida, Jacques. Dissemination. Continuum International Publishing Group, 2004.

Dickens ,Charles. A Tale of Two Cities (1859).



Doyle, Walter, and Kathy Carter. "Academic tasks in classrooms." Curriculum Inquiry 14.2 (1984): 129-149.

Dubin, Fraida, and Elite Olshtain. "The interface of writing and reading." TESOL Quarterly (1980): 353-363.

Emerson, Harriet F., and William L. Gekoski. "Development of comprehension of sentences with “because” or “if”." Journal of Experimental Child Psychology 29.2 (1980): 202-224.

Fahnestock, Jeanne. "Semantic and lexical coherence." College composition and communication 34.4 (1983): 400-416.

Falmagne, Rachel J. "Language and the acquisition of logical knowledge." Reasoning, necessity, and logic: Developmental perspectives (1990): 111-131.

Forster, E.M. Howards End. 1910.

Freedman, Sarah W. "How characteristics of student essays influence teachers' evaluations." Journal of Educational Psychology 71.3 (1979): 328.

Gajdusek, Linda. "Toward wider use of literature in ESL: Why and how." Tesol Quarterly 22.2 (1988): 227-257.

Gardner, P. L. "The identification of specific difficulties with logical connectives in science among secondary school students." Journal of Research in Science Teaching 17.3 (1980): 223-229.

Gillet, Andy, Angela Hammond and Mary Martala, Successful Academic Writing, Pearson Education, 2009.

Goldman, Susan R., and John D. Murray. "Knowledge of connectors as cohesion devices in text: A comparative study of native-English and English-as-a-second-language speakers." Journal of Educational Psychology 84.4 (1992): 504.

Griffiths, Toni, and David Guile. "A connective model of learning: the implications for work process knowledge." European educational research journal 2.1 (2003): 56-73.

Grout, Edward H., Standard English: Structure and Style. Pitman, 1933.

Hamilton, William, Lectures on Metaphysics. 2 vols, 1860.

Hatch, Evelyn. "The young child's comprehension of time connectives." Child Development (1971): 2111-2113.

Hazlitt, William. ‘Essay On Good Nature.’ 1816.

Hobbes, Thomas. The Elements of Law Natural and Politic. 1640.

Hood, Lois, Lois Bloom, and Charles J. Brainerd. "What, when, and how about why: A longitudinal study of early expressions of causality." Monographs of the Society for Research in Child Development (1979): 1-47.

Horn, Vivian. "One Way to Read a Paragraph." Elementary English 50.6 (1973): 871-874.

Humberstone, Lloyd, The Connectives. Cambridge, MA: MIT Press, 2011

Jennings, R. E. "The meanings of connectives." Davis & Gillon (2004).

Johnson, Barbara. The critical difference: Essays in the contemporary rhetoric of reading. JHU Press, 1985.

Joyce, James. Ulysses. (1922):

Kahane, Howard, and Nancy Cavender. Logic and contemporary rhetoric: The use of reason in everyday life. CengageBrain.com, 2006.

Kames, Lord. Elements of Criticism (1762).

Katz, E. Walker and Sandor B. Brent. "Understanding con-nectives." Journal of Verbal Learning and Verbal Behavior 7.2 (1968): 501-509.

Kidd, Evan, and Edith L. Bavin. "English-speaking children's comprehension of relative clauses: Evidence for general-cognitive and language-specific constraints on development." Journal of Psycholinguistic Research 31.6 (2002): 599-617.

Kiniry, Malcolm, and Ellen Strenski. "Sequencing expository writing: A recursive approach." College Composition and Communication 36.2 (1985): 191-202.

Lenker, Ursula, and Anneli Meurman-Solin, eds. Connectives in the History of English: Selected Papers from 13th ICEHL, Vienna, 23-28 August 2004).. Vol. 283. John Benjamins Publishing, 2007.

Lucas, F. L., Style. Cassell, 1955.

Lust, Barbara, Yu-Chin Chien, and Suzanne Flynn. "What children know: Methods for the study of first language acquisition." Studies in the acquisition of anaphora. Springer Netherlands, 1987. 271-356.

Maat, Henk Pander, and Ted Sanders. "Subjectivity in causal connectives: An empirical study of language in use." Cognitive Linguistics 12.3 (2001): 247-274.

Markels, Robin Bell. "Cohesion paradigms in paragraphs." College English 45.5 (1983): 450-464.

Maury, Pascale, and Amelie Teisserenc. "The role of connectives in science text comprehension and memory." Language and Cognitive Processes 20.3 (2005): 489-512.

MacArthur, Charles A., and Leah Lembo. "Strategy instruction in writing for adult literacy learners." Reading and Writing 22.9 (2009): 1021-1039.

Mason, Linda H., Richard M. Kubina, and Raol J. Taft. "Developing quick writing skills of middle school students with disabilities." The Journal of Special Education 44.4 (2011): 205-220.

Mellor, Anne K., English Romantic Irony. Harvard University Press, 1990.

McClure, Erica, and Esther Geva. "The development of the cohesive use of adversative conjunctions in discourse." Discourse processes 6.4 (1983): 411-432.

McCutchen, Deborah. "From novice to expert: Implications of language skills and writing-relevant knowledge for memory during the development of writing skill." Journal of Writing Research 3.1 (2011): 51-68.

Millis, Keith K., and Marcel Adam Just. "The influence of connectives on sentence comprehension." Journal of Memory and Language 33.1 (1994): 128-147.

Miltsakaki, Eleni, et al. "Annotating discourse connectives and their arguments." Proceedings of the HLT/NAACL Workshop on Frontiers in Corpus Annotation. 2004.



Morris, Bradley J. "Logically speaking: Evidence for item-based acquisition of the connectives AND & OR." Journal of Cognition and Development 9.1 (2008): 67-88.

Müller, Ulrich, Bryan Sokol, and Willis F. Overton. "Developmental sequences in class reasoning and propositional reasoning." Journal of Experimental Child Psychology 74.2 (1999): 69-106.

Murray, John D. "Logical connectives and local coherence." Sources of coherence in reading (1995): 107-125.

Murray, John D. "Connectives and narrative text: The role of continuity." Memory & Cognition 25.2 (1997): 227-236.

Myers, Jerome L., Makiko Shinjo, and Susan A. Duffy. "Degree of causal relatedness and memory." Journal of Memory and Language 26.4 (1987): 453-465.

Neimark, Edith D., and Nan S. Slotnick. "Development of the understanding of logical connectives." Journal of Educational Psychology 61.6p1 (1970): 451.

Neuwirth, Sharyn E. "A look at intersentence grammar." The Reading Teacher 30.1 (1976): 28-32.

Nippold, Marilyn A., Ilsa E. Schwarz, and Robin A. Undlin. "Use and understanding of adverbial conjuncts: a developmental study of adolescents and young adults." Journal of Speech, Language and Hearing Research 35.1 (1992): 108.

Paribakht, T. Sima, and Marjorie Bingham Wesche. "Reading comprehension and second language development in a comprehension-based ESL program." TESL Canada journal 11.1 (1993): 09-29.

Paris, Scott G. "Comprehension of language connectives and propositional logical relationships." Journal of experimental child psychology 16.2 (1973): 278-291.

Perelman, Chaim, and Carroll C. Arnold. The realm of rhetoric. Notre Dame, IN: University of Notre Dame Press, 1982.

 Peterson, Carole, and Allyssa McCabe. "Linking children’s connective use and narrative macrostructure." Developing narrative structure (1991): 29-53.

Peterson, Carole and A. McCabe. "A naturalistic study of the production of causal connectives by children." Journal of Child Language 12 (1985): 145-159.

Peterson, Carole, and Allyssa McCabe. "The connective ‘and’: Do older children use it less as they learn other connectives." Journal of Child Language 14.02 (1987): 375-381.

Peterson, Carole, and Allyssa McCabe. "The connective and as discourse glue." First Language 8.22 (1988): 19-28.

Platts, Mark de Bretton. Ways of meaning: An introduction to a philosophy of language. MIT Press, 1997.

Pope, Alexander. Essay on Criticism. 1711.

Posner, Roland. "Semantics and pragmatics of sentence connectives in natural language." Speech act theory and pragmatics. Springer Netherlands, 1980. 169-203.

Raban, Bridie. "Speaking and writing: Young children's use of connectives." Child Language Teaching and Therapy 4.1 (1988): 13-25.

Rickards, Debbie, and Shirl Hawes. "Connecting reading and writing through author's craft." The Reading Teacher 60.4 (2006): 370-373.

Robertson, Jean E. "Pupil understanding of connectives in reading." Reading Research Quarterly (1968): 387-417.

Sams, Lynn. "How to teach grammar, analytical thinking, and writing: A method that works." The English Journal 92.3 (2003): 57-65.

Sanders, Ted. "Coherence, causality and cognitive complexity in discourse." Proceedings/Actes SEM-05, First International Symposium on the exploration and modelling of meaning. 2005.

Silva, Marilyn N. "Perception and the choice of language in oral narrative: the case of the co-temporal connectives." Proceedings of the Annual Meeting of the Berkeley Linguistics Society. Vol. 7. 2011.

Sinatra, Richard, et al. "Combining visual literacy, text understanding, and writing for culturally diverse students." Journal of Reading 33.8 (1990): 612-617.

Sinatra, Richard C. "Teaching learners to think, read, and write more effectively in content subjects." The Clearing House 73.5 (2000): 266-273.

Snow, Catherine E., and Paola Uccelli. "The challenge of academic language." The Cambridge handbook of literacy (2009): 112-133.

Spooren, Wilbert. "The processing of underspecified coherence relations." Discourse processes 24.1 (1997): 149-168.

Steiner, George. Grammars of creation: originating in the Gifford lectures for 1990. Yale University Press, 2002.

Stenning, Keith, and Lynn Michell. "Learning how to tell a good story: The development of content and language in children's telling of one tale." Discourse Processes 8.3 (1985): 261-279.



Sternberg, Robert J. "Developmental patterns in the encoding and combination of logical connectives." Journal of Experimental Child Psychology 28.3 (1979): 469-498.

Sterne, Laurence. The Life and Opinions of Tristram Shandy, Gentleman. 1759-67.

Stotsky, Sandra L. "Sentence-combining as a curricular activity: its effect on written language development and reading comprehension." Research in the Teaching of English 9.1 (1975): 30-71.

Stott, Rebecca and Simon Avery, eds., Writing with Style. Pearson Education Ltd 2001.

Stott, Rebecca and Kim Landers, ‘Structures beyond the Sentence’ in Grammar and Writing, eds.,  Rebecca Stott and Peter Chapman. Pearson Education Ltd, 2001.

Sullivan, Laraine. "Development of causal connectives by children." Perceptual and Motor Skills 35.3 (1972): 1003-1010.

Swift, Jonathan. Gulliver’s Travels. 1726.

Susser, Bernard. "Process approaches in ESL/EFL writing instruction." Journal of Second Language Writing 3.1 (1994): 31-47.

Traill, H. D.,  ‘Critical Introduction. Laurence Sterne’ in English Prose. Vol. IV. Eighteenth Century, ed. Henry Craik, 1916.

Van Veen, Rosie, et al. "Parental input and connective acquisition: A growth curve analysis." First Language 29.3 (2009): 266-288.

Van Dijk, Teun A. "Pragmatic connectives." Journal of pragmatics 3.5 (1979): 447-456.

Van Eemeren, Frans H., et al. Fundamentals of argumentation theory: A handbook of historical backgrounds and contemporary developments. Mahwah, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum Associates, 1996.

Wallace, David L., and John R. Hayes. "Redefining revision for freshmen." Research in the Teaching of English (1991): 54-66.

Wilkins, John. An Essay towards a Real Character and a Philosophical Language. 1668.
 
Wilkinson, Andrew. The Foundations of Language; Talking and Reading to Young Children. Oxford University Press, 1971.

Thursday, 12 December 2013

Creating a Map of Connection and Transition

Students create their own maps of connection

"The creative journey has more departures than arrivals."

 

Students often have problems thinking about the flow of their ideas within a paragraph. This is not surprising as different thought-pathways occur at each (full) stop. 

For instance, having expressed one idea, the next one might illustrate, supplement, qualify, or reverse the preceding sentence. 

As a result, our sentence journeys quickly become very complicated. A complex argument often degenerates into confusion, and the sense of feeling lost. Writers and readers need signposts, and they need a map.

In reality, writing involves weaving together a complex and dense thread of connectives and transitions. These words have the special function of signalling the direction of travel. They help to maintain a sense of purpose and direction. By using them effectively the writer is able to stick to a plan. Transitions help writing to flow.

By thinking about the different kinds of transition needed in writing it is possible to create word and phrase clusters for each one. 

In visual terms each cluster can become a line that has many variations: 

the Location Line, 
the Timing Line, 
the Comparison Line, 
the Contrast and Difference Line, 
the Supplement Line, 
the Disputation line, 
the Sequence Line, 
the Example and Illustration Line,
the Summary Line. 

My book provides lists of these word clusters, together with hundreds of examples of their usage drawn from published writers in all fields of work.

I have also provided a useful summary of the most frequently used transition words and phrases at the end of this blog.

It is easy to create your own multiple-line personalised maps:

Pairs of students research and select the key words that will stand in as the stations. 

They draw coloured lines with sufficient stations and then add the words to create their personalised map of connection.  

They will be learning about connection by making links.

A traditional - and easy - way to create a London Tube-style connection map is to use coloured wool and drawing pins on a noticeboard. Each station then becomes one of the key words or phrases used to signal a sentence connection or transition. The cluster then represents the colour of the line.

Lines of writing can also be demonstrated in the classroom by using human subjects as the 'stations' and throwing around a ball of coloured wool. But be warned, this activity can create a tangled web. Yet this experience usefully serves an apt metaphor to express the idea that complex writing sometimes works - and sometimes fails. Sentences are social; they require teamwork.

A useful follow-up game is to guess the line:

"If am at station X and move to station Y, which line am I on?"

Logic line clusters can also be used to analyse an essay. This involves highlighting the writer's choice (or implied choice) of connection and transition, sentence by sentence. In this process we stick back in and stress the otherwise invisible moments of connection and transition.

Clearly, a high frequency of time-based words suggests narrative; a high frequency of space-based words will be evident in description; multiple sequence words are crucial for argument, &c.

I also like to use the idea of the electronic circuit board. We are not always using all of the elements on the board. Nonetheless, a broken circuit will sometime lead to a fatal system error.

I'd love to see your connectivity maps if your have tried out this activity! 


Images for Connectivity on Pinterest

 




The Nine Lines of Connection:



The Space Line

A sense of where something is in relation to something else. This use is rather like using a preposition or an adverbial phrase. The words associated with this usage are: above, across, adjacent, adjacent to, alongside, amid, among, around, at the side, before, behind, below, beneath, beside,  between, beyond, down, from, further, here, here and there, in front of, in the back, in the background, in the centre of, in the distance, in the foreground, in the front, in the middle, near, nearby, next, on this side, opposite to, over, there, to the left, to the right, to the side, under, up, where, wherever. These words all suggest a sense of place or location and are therefore very useful for visual description.

The Timing Line

Supply a sense of when something is happening, or to communicate the sense of a logical sequence in time. Examples of this usage of transitional words and phrases: about, after, afterwards, all of a sudden, as soon as, at the present time, at the same time, at this instant, before, currently, during, eventually, finally, first, formerly, forthwith, fourth, from time to time, further, hence, henceforth, immediately, in a moment, in due time, in the first place, in the future, in the meantime, in the past, in time, instantly, last, later, meanwhile, next, now, occasionally, often, once, presently, prior to, quickly, second, shortly, since, sometimes, soon, sooner or later, straightaway, subsequently, suddenly, then, third, to begin with, today, until, until now, up to the present time, when, whenever, without delay.

The Comparison Line

Point to a comparison of two ideas. This may be achieved by deploying words such as additionally, again, also, and, as, as a matter of fact, as well as, by the same token, comparatively, correspondingly, coupled with, equally, equally important; first, second, third, fourth, fifth; furthermore, identically, in addition, in like manner, in the light of, in the same fashion, in the same way, like, likewise, moreover, not only ... but also, not to mention, of course, similarly, to say nothing of, together with, too. As these examples demonstrate the ruling idea is similarity.
Tube map of the Art of Connection with key words presented as stations
Another Map showing The Art of Connection

The Difference Line

Indicate a contrast. English provides many examples to signal the notion of difference. The most common examples are and still, and yet, above all, after all, albeit, although, although this may be true, at the same time, be that as it may, besides, but, conversely, despite, different from, even so, even though, however, in contrast, in reality, in spite of, instead, nevertheless, nonetheless, notwithstanding, on the contrary, on the other hand, or, otherwise, rather, regardless of, still, then again, unlike, whereas, while, yet.

The Supplement Line

If the writer wants to present additional or supplementary ideas the most common options are: also, and, as well, moreover, then, too, besides, equally, furthermore, in addition.

The Argument Line

In the process of disputation, argument, or debate a writer sometimes indicates that a point has been agreed or already taken into account. In order to suggest that a point has been conceded the following words and phrases may be used: granted, obviously, to be sure, agreed, certainly, of course.

The Sequence Line

In order to provide a sense of logical sequence the writer uses words such as accordingly, as long as, as a result, because, because of, consequently, due to, even if, for fear that, for this reason, for the purpose of, forthwith, given that, granted (that), hence, henceforth, if, in case, in order to, in that case, in the event that, in the hope that, in view of, inasmuch as, lest, on account of, on (the) condition (that), only, owing to, provided that, seeing that, since, so,  so as to, so long as, so that, thereby, therefore, thereupon, thus, to the end that, under those circumstances, unless, when, whenever, while, with this in mind, with this intention. In these examples there may be a sense of cause and effect, or the sense that one idea results from another. In some cases there is the sense of conditionality or a specific relation of purpose.


The Illustration Line

If the writer has been using concepts, ideas, or theories, it is often helpful to provide an illustration or an example. For this purpose we deploy words such as: another key point, as an illustration, by all means, certainly, chiefly, especially, first thing to remember, for example, for instance, for one thing, for this reason, frequently, important to realize, in detail, in fact, in general, in other words, in particular, in this case, including, indeed, like, issues to consider, markedly, most compelling evidence, must be remembered, namely, notably, on the negative side, on the positive, point often overlooked, recalling, significantly, specifically, such as, surely, surprisingly, that is to say, taking into account, to be sure, to clarify, to demonstrate, to emphasize, to enumerate, to explain, to point out, to put it another way, to put it differently, to repeat, truly, with attention to, with regard to, with this in mind.

The Summary Line


Useful connective words include: after all, all in all, all things considered, altogether, as can be seen, as has been demonstrated, as has been noted, as shown,  above, by and large, finally, for the most part, generally speaking, given these points, hence, in a word, in any event, in brief, in conclusion, in conclusion, in either case, in essence, in fact, in short, in summary, in the final analysis, in the long run, on balance, on the whole, ordinarily, overall, that is to say, that is, to sum up, to summarize, usually.



It will be clear that many transitional words have multiple and overlapping functions. The summary, for instance, also signals the end of a sequence. Similarly, examples may also be supplements, because they provide additional illustrations or instances.

Download a sample of this book.

The Art of Connection.

Illustration of connectives and transition words used in English composition
This was produced by a boy of  10 years