如何写一篇文章的摘要?– 下文是对《英语写作手册》相关章节的翻译

摘要是对一篇文章的主题思想的简单陈述。它用最简洁的语言概括了原文的主题。写摘要主要包括三个步骤:(1)阅读;(2)写作;(3)修改成文。

第一步:阅读

A.认真阅读给定的原文材料。如果一遍不能理解,就多读两遍。阅读次数越多,你对原文的理解就越深刻。

B.给摘要起一个标题。用那些能概括文章主题思想的单词、短语或短句子作为标题。也可以采用文中的主题句作为标题。主题句往往出现在文章的开头或结尾。一个好标题有助于确定文章的中心思想。

C.现在,就该决定原文中哪些部分重要,哪些部分次重要了。对重要部分的主要观点进行概括。

D.简要地记下主要观点——主题、标题、细节等你认为对概括摘要重要的东西。

第二步:动手写作

A. 摘要应该只有原文的三分之一或四分之一长。因此首先数一下原文的字数,然后除以三,得到一个数字。摘要的字数可以少于这个数字,但是千万不能超过这个数字。

B. 摘要应全部用自己的话完成。不要引用原文的句子。

C. 应该遵循原文的逻辑顺序。这样你就不必重新组织观点、事实。

D. 摘要必须全面、清晰地表明原文所载的信息,以便你的读者不需翻阅原文就可以完全掌握材料的原意。

E. 写摘要时可以采用下列几种小技巧:

1) 删除细节。只保留主要观点。

2) 选择一至两个例子。原文中可能包括5个或更多的例子,你只需从中筛选一至二个例子。

3) 把长段的描述变成短小、简单的句子。如果材料中描述某人或某事用了十个句子,那么你只要把它们变成一两句即可。

4) 避免重复。在原文中,为了强调某个主题,可能会重复论证说明。但是这在摘要中是不能使用的。应该删除那些突出强调的重述句。

5) 压缩长的句子。如下列两例:

“His courage in battle might without exaggeration be called lion-like.”

可以概括为:”He was very brave in battle.”

“He was hard up for money and was being pressed by his creditor.”

可以概括为:“He was in financial difficulties.”

6) 你还可以使用词组代替整句或者从句。请看下面的例子:

“Beautiful mountains like Mount Tai, Lushan Mountain, and Mount Huang, were visited by only a few people in the past. Today, better wages, holidays with pay, new hotels on these mountains, and better train and bus services, have brought them within reach of many who never thought of visiting them ten years ago.”

可以概括为:”Beautiful mountains like Mount Tai, once visited by only a few people, are today accessible to many, thanks to better wages, paid holidays, new hotels and better transportation services.”

7) 使用概括性的名词代替具体的词,比如:

“She brought home several Chinese and English novels, a few copies of Time and Newsweek and some textbooks. She intended to read all of them during the winter vocation.”

可以概括为:”She brought home a lot of books to read during the vocation.”

8) 使用最短的连接词。比如,可以使用but, then, thus, yet, though,不能使用at the same time, in the first place, because of these, on the other hand等较长的连接词。通常,使用分号就能够达成使用连接词的效果。

9) 文章中的第一人称说的话通常在摘要中转换成第三人称,从而把大段的对白简化,比如:

Kate looked at Paul disapprovingly: You use much too much salt on your food, Paul — it’s not good for you!” Paul put down his knife and frowned:”Why on earth not! If you didn’t have salt on your food it would taste awful… like eating cardboard or sand… just imagine bread without salt in it, or potatoes or pasta cooked without salt!” Kate was patient. She didn’t want to quarrel with Paul. She wanted to persuade him. She said firmly:”But too much salt is bad for you. It cause high blood pressure and latter on, heart-attacks. It also disguises the taste of food, the real tastes which are much more subtle than salt, and which we have lost the sensitivity to appreciate any more.”

可以用第三人称概括为:

Kate suggested to Paul that he should eat less salt. She thought that eating too much salt would do hard to Paul’s health and that it could reduce the real tastes of food. But Paul disagreed. He said that food without salt would be tasteless.

第三步:修改成文

草稿拟好以后,对它进行修改。首先,与原文比较看是否把所有重要的观点都概括了,摘要中的观点是否与原文中的完全一致。其次,如果摘要中出现了不必要的词汇、短语或长句子,删除它们。第三,检查拼写、语法和标点符号的错误。最后,保持语言简单明了。

经过上述步骤和方法,一篇摘要就可以完成了。

批注:网络上有关摘要写作的资源不胜枚举,但是不一定都切合大家的需求,我这里提供一些比较好的摘要写作链接,希望对大家的练习有所帮助。我也欢迎大家把写好的summary和原文一起发到这里来(作为评论提交到这里来),我会帮助大家考究细节问题。

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