Generalizations as simple statements or comparisons
A generalization paints everything with the same broad brush, from insect legs to the sides of barns.
Generalizations frequently use a plural subject.
- Dogs are bigger than cats.
- A Pomeranian at less than 5.5 pounds is smaller than most domestic cats.
- Goats will eat anything.
- Goats will eat the labels from tin cans, but they cannot actually eat a tin can.
- Clouds bring rain.
- Altocumulus clouds, cumulus clouds, and statocumulus clouds predict fair weather.
- An apple a day keeps the doctor away.
- While it is true that apples offer many benefits to their consumers, they “are not particularly rich in vitamins and minerals. However, they contain decent amounts of both vitamin C and potassium” (healthline.com).
“If/When” statements add conditions to generalizations.
Generalizations may depend on certain conditions, indicated by “if,” “when,” “while,” or other conjunctions.
- If it snows, sidewalks are slick.
- Sidewalks are slick if it snows.
- (Snowy sidewalks are slick.)
- When it’s summer, days are longer.
- Days are longer when it’s summer.
- (Days are longer in the summer.)
- If the sun shines, the temperature rises.
- The temperature rises if the sun shines.
- The temperature rises during the day.
- If it snowed, sidewalks were slick.
- Sidewalks were slick if it snowed.
- Snowy sidewalks were slick.
- When it was summer, the days were longer.
- The days were longer when it was summer.
- Summer days were longer.
- As the sun rose, the temperature rose.
- The temperature rose as the sun rose.
- Sunshine made temperatures rise.
- Because it was easily caught, the dodo bird was food for the early settlers.
- The dodo bird was food for the early settlers because it was easily caught.
- The easily-caught dodo bird was food for the early settlers.