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Session Seven 三、 Frequent Use of Imperative Sentences As we all know, one of the functions of advertising is that of persuasion, i.e. to persuade consumers.

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Presentation on theme: "Session Seven 三、 Frequent Use of Imperative Sentences As we all know, one of the functions of advertising is that of persuasion, i.e. to persuade consumers."— Presentation transcript:

1 Session Seven 三、 Frequent Use of Imperative Sentences As we all know, one of the functions of advertising is that of persuasion, i.e. to persuade consumers to take immediate action. Imperative sentences are very important in English advertisements, because they perform the function of direct persuasion and exhorta- tion. Imperative sentences are most widely employed in English advertising. According to statistics, there is at least one imperative sen- tence in every four in English advertising texts.

2 Therefore, frequent use of imperative sentences has become a distinct phenomenon in English advertisements. e.g. (1) Get Super Snowcem. (2) Get the shave that’s extra close – the Remington shave. (3) Get your copy free. (4) Get more income from your income tele- phone lines. (5) Get Volvo power behind you to take you far and away. (6) Always buy Cadbury’s. (7) Buy your new suit direct from the UK’s

3 premier manufacturer and save literally hundreds of pounds. (8) Let your child in on a world of wonder: Things of Science. (9) Let the New York Times find you. (10) For the brightest gloss choose from Gaymel’s wonderful color range. (11)Have some Harveys with your Christmas. (12)Have a little fruit after dinner. (13) Look for Top Shelf on your grocer’s shelf in the new microwave entrée section, and go places with it.

4 Always ask for Gallaher’s Blues. (14) Try our smooth feeder system. (15) Try new Rice Krispies. (16) Enjoy the world’s No.1 Scotch whisky. (17) Enjoy the world’s No.1 Scotch whisky. (18) For lovelier hairstyles use New Amami Waveset and conditioner. (19) Look…No meniscus reading problems! (20) Just see how marks and smudges disappear when you use Handy Andy. (21) Watch the Daxaids instant dispersal

5 test. Get ready to encounter the new trend in timepieces. The Citizen Espreme Collection. Watches that are indicators of tastes and moods, that express you. -Citizen Watch The above-mentioned imperative sentences chosen from various advertisements are always seen in newspapers and magazines. If you carefully look at them, you will find that such verbs as get, buy, let, choose, have are directly

6 associated with the acquisition of products; that verbs like look for, ask for, try are indirect- ly associated with the acquisition of products; that verbs like enjoy and use are obviously associated with the consumption of products or with the use of service; and that verbs such As look, see and watch act as appeals for notice or attraction. “look, see, and watch are common in com- mercials of the demonstration type, where they call the consumer’s attention to what is happe- ning before the consumer’s eyes.’(Leech, 1966:46)

7 Other verbs such as remember, make sure are favored by the admen, too. In imperative sentences such verbs perform the function of advising consumers to note some important points in the process of choosing or using the product or service. It is to be noted that there are few negative imperative sentences in English advertising. Negative imperative sentences are employed only for the purposes of expressing admonish- ment or warning.

8 四、 Frequent Use of the Simple Present Tense In English advertising, the copy writer tends to use the simple present tense, although he or she employs other tenses as well when ne- cessary. Obviously, the simple present tense is ubiquitous in English advertisements. Please look at the following examples. (1)Indulge your senses with the freshness of Fa Gently clean and moisturize your skin with the freshness of Fa Shower Gel. Its rich emol- lients and ideal PH balance leave your skin soft

9 and smooth to the touch. Fa, Europe’s most popular brand of bath and shower products, is now available as a complete line with a choice of three enchan- ting fragrances. Freshness you can feel.70 (2) POND’S DISCOVERS HOW TO FIGHT DRYNESS EVERY TIME YOU WASH YOUR FACE Instead of soap, try a whole new way to wash your face. Pond’s Facial Cleaning Foam. It’s a light, refreshing foam that cleans thoroughly,

10 cleans gently, but doesn’t dry your skin like soap. New Pond’s leaves your skin feeling soft and smooth every time you wash your face. Try it and see. No one knows more about beautiful skin than Pond’s. POND’S CLEANS LIKE NO SOAP CAN. -Also available for sensitive skin. Example (1) is an advertisement of Fa Shower Gel. It shows that Fa Shower Gel enables your skin to be soft and smooth with

11 enchanting fragrances. Example (2) is an advertisement of Pond’s Facial Cleaning Foam. The use of the simple present tense in these two examples shows the eternal particular characteristics and special functions of the two commodities, Fa Shower Gel and Pond’s Facial Cleaning Foam, enabling customers to think of them as things beyond any shadow of doubt. As a matter of fact, the simple present tense is always employed in advertising texts. Why is the simple present tense always preferred

12 in English advertisements? This is because “ A much more frequent meaning of the sim- ple present tense in anchoring advertising texts is the ‘eternal truth’ variety ” (Greg Myers, 994:39). As the simple present tense is used to express a habitual, permanent, or repeated action, or a perpetual condition or state, its frequent use in advertising texts adds eternity and durability to the products being advertised. By using the simple present tense, the adver- tiser intends to tell the audience or readers the hard facts and the permanent truth concerning

13 the advertised product or service. And custo- Mers usually believe messages conveyed by advertising texts characterized by the use of the simple present tense. 五、 Frequent Use of Conditional Sentences In English advertising, conditional sentences introduced by if often occur in the first line, so as to strengthen promotion and persuasion. The conditional sentences can be divided into two types: real conditional sentences and unreal conditional sentences. In advertising texts, real

14 conditional sentences are generally preferred. Let’s observe the following examples. (1) If you suffer from indigestion, this is something you want to know. (2) If you’re a wife who believes that the best Home-made Bread is made with good honest plain flour – then this flour, made by McDougall’s, is the flour for you… (3) JAMAICA, THE PERFECT PLACE TO UNWIND Soft golden sands, shady blue lagoons, heart-stopping scarlet sunsets, wherever you look, Jamaica is stepped in romance.

15 If you’ve ever dreamt of strolling hand in hand across glorious, unspoilt beaches as the warm Caribbean licks gently around your ankles and the smell of tropical blooms fills the air, then this is the place for you… (4) Handmade Sterling Silver If you’re happy with ordinary flatware, fine. If you want something really outstanding, have a look at our handmade sterling silver. We invite your visit and comparison. James Robinson 15 east 57th street, NEW YORK

16 (5) IF YOUR FEET COULD DREAM! THIS IS WHAT THEY’D DREAMT ABOUT. They’d dreamt of softness. Of luxurious comfort. Of delicious colors and supple lea- thers. They’d dreamt about Soft Spots. Ca- sual shoes. Sporty shoes. Really comfortable shoes. So make these dreams come true. Just call for the Soft Spots retailer near you. SOFT SPOTS Really comfortable shoes (6)YOU’LL HAVE MORE FUN ON THE BEACH

17 IF YOU FORGET YOUR SWIMSUIT. - SLIX From the above quoted examples, we can come to the conclusion that conditional sen- tences introduced by if single out the particular type of customers or clients. The if-sentence in Example (1) singles out the particular type of people who suffer from indigestion, while the main clause suggests that they use the product. In example (2), the if-sentence singles out the particular type of wives who believe that the best Home-made Bread is made with good honest plain flour, then the main clause sug- gests that they buy the product. In Example

18 (3), the if-sentence singles out the particular type of lovers who have dreamt of strolling hand in hand across glorious, unspoilt beaches, while the main clause invites them to visit it. In Example (4), the if-sentence singles out the particular type of people who are happy with ordinary flatware and want something really outstanding, while the main clause invites them to see it. Examples (5) and (6) are adverts of the shoe and the swimsuit, where the if-sentences are used in the headlines. Thus, the advertisements can capture the readers’ attention.

19 Another type of conditional sentences assume this form: imperative sentence + and + sen- tence of result or effect. Let’s see the follow- ing example: (7) …Push this blue button, and you flush out goods and loose mineral deposits that clog up steam vents, choke off steam. Push this button, and you’ve made life a lot easier…. Obviously, the above example actually consists of two conditional sentences, which assume the form of imperative sentences. As a matter of fact, such conditional sentences

20 play the double function of introducing indirectly the desirable or favorable aspects or characteristics of the advertised product or service, and of calling prospective custo- mers to take action in an indirect way.


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