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Defining “Voice”

 Voice in English Grammar is the form a


transitive verb takes to indicate whether the
subject of the verb performs or receives the
action.
Examples: Minu waters the plants.
(The subject Minu performs an action).

The lolly is eaten by Vinu. (The subject


lolly receives the action).
There are two types of
Voice:
Active
Passive
Example:
Active : Shail blows the candles.
Passive: The candles are blown by
Shail.
Let us understand this better…
Active Voice

 indicates that the subject of the


verb is acting or performing an
action.
Active Voice
 These examples show that the
subject performs the action:

The nurse is giving the medicine.


The nurse (subject) is performing
the action of giving (verb) the
medicine.

Krishna will read the report to


the class.
Krishna (subject) will carry out
the action of reading (verb).
Passive Voice

 In a passive voice sentence, the


subject and object flip-flop or get
interchanged.
 The subject becomes the passive
recipient of the action.
Passive Voice
 These examples show the subject
being acted upon by the verb:

 The medicine is being given by the


nurse.
 Themedicine (subject) is being
given (verb)
 A book report will be given by Krishna
to the class.
A book report (subject) will be given
(verb).
Reasons to Use the Active
Voice
Most writers prefer to use active
voice because
 it is more direct
 concise and
 propels the reader forward
through the writing avoiding
weak constructions.
Reasons to Use the
Active VOICE
Compare
 Active: The young waitress dropped
the tray of food. (concise statement of
fact, with the focus on the waitress)
 Passive: The tray of food was dropped
by the young waitress. (lengthy; focus
on the tray of food, less direct)
It is better to say:
 The Supervisor has granted your
request for a PE class. (Active)
The same conveyed in Passive appears
to be a weak and lengthy
construction.
 Your request for a PE class has been
granted by the Supervisor. (Passive)
When to Use Passive Voice
 In general, the passive voice is
less direct
 less forceful and
 less concise than the active voice.
When to Use Passive Voice
 When you do not know or do not want
to reveal the performer of an action.
Example: The kidnappers have been
caught.
 When you want to emphasize the
receiver of an action.
Example: The brave youngster was
rewarded suitably.
While converting Active to Passive
Voice , the same tense is retained in
the past-participle form.
 For example:
 Active Voice-The children ate
(simple past tense) the cookies.
 Passive Voice-The cookies were eaten
(past participle)by the children.
Often passive voice sentences
will contain a "by" phrase
indicting who or what
performed the action.
Example: The football was
kicked by Rohan.
Look at the conversion here:
Active: My friend gave me a basket of
flowers. CLICK ON THE SPEAKER TO
HEAR VOICE

Passive: I was given a basket of flowers by


my friend.
or
A basket of flowers was given
to me by my friend.
A simple conversion
table
ACTIVE PASSIVE
 He throws the apple.  The apple is thrown.
 He threw the apple.  The apple was
thrown.
 He is/was throwing  The apple is/was
the apple. being thrown.
 He has/had thrown  The apple has/had
the apple. been thrown.
 He will/shall throw  The apple will/shall
the apple. be thrown .
LeT’S pRAcTiSe chAnging
ACTIVE VOICE DECLARATIVE
STATEMENTS INTO PASSIVE
VOICE.
REMEMBER TO RETAIN THE
SAME TENSE WHEN VOICE IS
CHANGED.
Active(A)-Amina steered the boat.

Passive(P)-The boat was steered by


Amina.
A-Roshan decorates
the Christmas tree
happily.
P-The Christmas tree is
decorated by Roshan,
happily.

A-Someone has stolen


my bicycle.
P-My bicycle has been
stolen.
A- Joey kangaroo is holding a bottle of milk.

P-A bottle of milk is being held by Joey kangaroo.

A-Factories pollute the natural environment.

P-The natural environment is polluted by factories.


A-Professor Verma will assign each group a
research project . Next, he will discuss the
documentary sources with us.

P-Each group will be assigned a research project


by Professor Verma . Next, the documentary
sources will be discussed with us.
A-Seismologists have examined data
concerning the recent earthquake, and they
will file reports.

CLICK ON THE SPEAKER


TO HEAR VOICE

P-Data concerning the recent earthquake have


been examined by the seismologists and the
reports will be filed.
(Mixing of Active and Passive constructions in
the same sentence has been thus rightly
avoided here.)
Make a mind which never Minds.
Make a heart which never Hurts.

Rashid Sajjad