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What is the difference between these examples?

My attitudes have greatly shaped after the study.

and

My attitudes have been greatly shaped after the study.

I was searching for some essay conclusion examples on the Internet and found this one:

My attitudes have greatly shaped after this study. I have realized the ways meat impact our life and health. Meatless meals might improve the health conditions of patients suffering from various disorders, and the observed study proves it.

Source: https://pro-essay-writer.com/blog/essay-conclusion-examples

I wanted to use the first phrase in my own essay. I wonder if it is correct or not. Personally, it seems weird to me.

I don't want to use exactly the words that are in the sentence. I want to write something like 'My attitude(s) towards [something] have been greatly shaped over this period of time/since I was a child/during my life. Would it be correct?

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  • 1
    I think it would be more correct to say "My attitudes have been greatly shaped by the study." Jul 17, 2019 at 15:45
  • 1
    Please add more detail to the question. Let us know which you think is correct, and why, and what research or sources you might have found to support your choice. Thanks.
    – Andrew
    Jul 17, 2019 at 15:50
  • Please look at my edits. I mean paper. Thanks.
    – Stacy
    Jul 17, 2019 at 16:02
  • Please answer my question: what is the study? One paper you read? I just said X is shaped by Y or Y shapes X. You have: My X was shaped after. That does not work.
    – Lambie
    Jul 17, 2019 at 16:06
  • I don't want to use exactly the words that are in the sentence. I want to write something like 'My attitude(s) towards [something] have been greatly shaped over this period of time/since I was a child/during my life.
    – Stacy
    Jul 17, 2019 at 16:18

1 Answer 1

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"Shape" is a transitive verb. That means that it has both an active and a passive voice. In the active voice, the subject of the verb is what is acting. In the passive voice, the subject is what being acted upon. Except in highly stylized English and in interrogative sentences, the subject precedes the verb. So the subject in your sentence is "attitudes."

The agent or actor does not have to be specified when using the passive voice, but when it is specified, it is idiomatically done using the preposition "by." Now it is true that nothing can be caused by something that has not happened: causation is merely "wonted succession in time." But if A precedes B, it does not entail that A caused B. So "by" is more specific than " after."

The passive voice is formed in English by some form of the verb "to be" plus the perfect participle of the verb. "Have been" is a valid form of the verb "to be."

An idiomatic sentence would be:

My attitudes have greatly shaped the study

means that the study has been changed because of your attitudes.

Another idiomatic sentence would be:

My attitudes have been greatly shaped by the study

means that your attitudes have been changed because of the study.

To sum up, neither of your sentences is idiomatic, and I suspect that your intended meaning is the second of the sentences above.

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  • Wouldn't one's attitude to something be changed by reading a study? And not "attitudes"?
    – Lambie
    Jul 17, 2019 at 16:09
  • @Lambie. Your suggestion is probably more typical, but there is no reason why a single study could not change one's attitude on more than one topic. The question was a bit odd because, ostensibly, it merely asked for an interpretation of two sentences, neither idiomatic, but it probably was asking how to convey a particular thought that was not actually specified. Jul 17, 2019 at 16:17
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    Indeed. I really think this would be: My attitudes were shaped by studying. And: My attitude about y was shaped by the study. [paper].
    – Lambie
    Jul 17, 2019 at 16:23
  • @Lambie Quite possible. As I said, it is hard to know what the question is really after. Jul 17, 2019 at 17:06

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