MBA Preparation / #Grammar

April 04, 2017 @ 01:15 PM

Dash implies change of thought

Use of Dash | MBARendezvous

Published: Tuesday, 12 July, 2016 10:00 AM

Dash implies change of thought 

Dash (-) is one of those punctuation marks which create a dramatic impact in the written language. Though not used as frequently as other punctuation marks, such as commas, full stops, question marks, semi colons, inverted commas, dash have their own value in the language. One should be careful about the places where dash could be inserted. Using it indiscriminately and inappropriately should be avoided.

The Cambridge Encyclopedia of the English Language defines dash as a punctuation mark used to show a comment or afterthought at the end of a sentence, or simply an incomplete utterance. 

A dash :

Denotes sudden change of thought

A dash indicates a sudden change of thought in a sentence. With the help of a dash, writers can break the expected continuity of an utterance and create a dramatic impact by suddenly introducing a line of thought which is least expected and sometimes runs contrary to whatever precedes it. A dash becomes a powerful tool in the hands of an experienced writer. It allows the writer to change the thought or tone in a sentence.
For instance, 

a. ‘What he said was true - or so I thought.

In the above sentence, the first part of the sentence, ‘What he said was true’ leads the reader to believe that he spoke the truth which was absolute. The second part of the sentence after the dash ‘or so I thought’ gives a dramatic impetus to the sentence and brings in the element of subjectivity (I thought his words to be true), which contradicts the expectations the reader might have after the reading the first part of the sentence.

b. Alisha and Paras - they are a fun couple  will be visiting us this evening.

In the above sentence, the main idea appears to be that Alisha and Paras will be visiting us in the evening, but the extra information given to the reader purposely, ‘they are a fun couple’, is meant to insert a new thought and have a bearing on the reader’s understanding of Alisha and Paras. 

Denotes an afterthought

A dash comes in handy when the writer wishes to write something as an afterthought added to the end of the sentence.

For instance,

a. All the students of the class passed the exam - ever single one!

The dash in the above sentence helps the writer emphasis and reaffirm the main idea that all students, without any exception, passed the exam.

b. Akhil will travel to Paris the coming week - his first trip abroad.

The dash here introduces additional information, almost inserted as an afterthought.

The dash can take the place of commas, parenthesis or colons, producing different effects. For instance, it can replace commas, to create an emphasis which the commas miss,
You are the friend, the only friend, who stood by me.
You are the friend- the only friend -¬ who stood by me.

The dash can also replace parenthesis, which are more subtle and formal. Dash is considered less formal than parenthesis, for instance,
He sold off his land (600 acres), to the highest bidder.
He sold off his land – 600 acres - to the highest bidder.

Clearly, a dash, in most cases, is a useful tool to change the thought or introduce an afterthought in the sentence. Experienced writers know the difference between a dash and a comma, colon and other punctuation marks and use them for the intended impact.

Stay informed, Stay ahead and stay inspired with MBA Rendezvous

Crucial Dates, You Should not Miss

TAPMI, Manipal
Admission Application closes on January 16, 2018 for 2018-20
BIMTECH, Greater Noida
Admissions open for PGDM Programmes at BIMTECH. Apply Now !
Lal Bahadur Shastri Institute of Management
Admissions are Open at LBSIM, Delhi. Apply Now !
FORE School of Management
Apply for PGDM & PGDM-IB Programmes. Application Deadline is December 22, 2017.
Goa Institute of Management
PGDM Admissions Open at GIM. Apply Before January 5, 2018
Last Date to Apply for MBA (Full Time) Programme at NIRMA is January 09, 2018
XAT 2018
Application Last Date 30th November 2017
IMI New Delhi
Application closes 4th December 2017
XIM Bhubaneshwar
Last Date 8th December 2017
SIBM Bengaluru
Apply for SNAP 2017 to be held on Dec 17 and apply for SIBM-Bengaluru through the SNAP Form
Institute of Rural Management Anand
IRMASAT will be conducted on February 4,2018, Apply Before December 31,2017
IBSAT 2017
Last date for IBSAT registration is December 12 , 2017
Last date to register for SNAP is 24th November, 2017. Last date for SSBF is 2nd January 2018
SIBM Hyderabad
Apply for SNAP 2017 to be held on Dec 17 and apply for SIBM-Hyderabad through the SNAP Form
K J Somaiya Institute of Management Studies & Research, Mumbai
Last date for Application is 31st Jan, 2018
Application for PGDM 2018-20 at SDMIMD is open till February 28, 2018
Institute of Management Technology
Application closes on November 24, 2017
MDI Murshidabad
Application for PGPM 2018-20 at MDI Murshidabad is open till November 24, 2017

Admission Open Now

Following Colleges are accepting applications.


Admissions open for 2018-20

PGDM, PGDM (HRM), PGDM(B & FS), Executive PGDM

Apply Online