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Disagreeing Politely

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Coming from a teacher, it may sound strange to hear me admit that, when it comes to grammar, I just don’t have that much time for it!

Now don’t get me wrong… I am in no way saying that grammar is useless. It’s just that I feel that, in a list of ‘Important Things About English’, it would appear much closer to the bottom rather than the top. Look at it like this – grammar is the study of how words work together, and how they don’t… which means that, if you don’t have the words, there’s very little you can do, no matter how much grammar you have up your sleeve. When students insist that the most vital part of learning a language is a knowledge of grammatical structures, I tend to disagree…

Ah, but how do I disagree? The words that I choose could give people the impression that I am rude or condescending or a big-headed know-it-all… hmmm! Now there’s some useful language!

Language of Disagreeing Politely (or ‘How Not To Cause Offence!’)

There are many ways to express disagreement, here are few useful ways to do it.

1. You must be joking!

2. You can’t be serious!

3. Yes, but don’t you think that…?

4. Perhaps, but I can’t help thinking that…

5. I take your point, but that’s not the way I see it.

6. True, but I’m afraid I disagree (with)…

7. I see what you mean but I’m not at all convinced that…

8. There may be some truth in what you say but don’t you think it’s more a question of....

 By Danny