Saturday, March 07, 2009

2級 Grammar review

This time, I'll be discussing the つつ's. This is one of those 2級 grammar points that has multiple meanings that are, at first glance, easy to confuse. The thing is, they're really different.

Let's start with this one: つつある

In the middle of doing .../ continuing to...

This formal expression is rarely used in conversation and shows some that something is in the process of progressing.

-masu形 + つつある

教科書の例: 最近、田舎がどんどん都会化しつつある
男らしいの例: 私は影響されていないけれども、世界経済はますます悪化しつつあるようだ。


The next つつ, without the ある, means basically the same thing as ながら -- "while."

Aつつ,B : A and B are done simultaneously.

This expression is a bit rigid and bookish. ながら is the more conversational of the two.

-masu形 + つつ

教科書の例: 私は父の無事を祈りつつ病院に急いだ。
男らしいの例: 勉強しつつアメリカンアイドルを見ようとしていた。


Finally, there is one more variation of つつ, this one often featuring も after this つつ.
This one is similar to ながら, again, in that it means "although" or "in spite of." It is used to describe how one can feel bad about something. Quite often, you'll see it paired with  知る and 思う, i.e. 知りつつ and 思いつつ

Although, though

-masu形+ つつ・つつも

教科書の例: 運動不足は体に悪いと知りつつ、時間がなくて運動ができない。
男らしいの例: この記入を書くのはすごく時間がかかると知りつつ、書いてからこれ以上に何もできなくなった。

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