Could I use the passive voice in such a way:

"These kinds of subjects are easier to be taught"


"Subjects like drama, art or poetry are extremely difficult to be understood by both youngsters and adults"

Are the above sentences correct? Do they sound awkward?


Yes, your sentences do sound awkward. Using the passive voice adds unnecessary complication to the idea you are expressing. Better to say

These subjects are easier to learn.

[These subjects] are difficult for both youngsters and adults to understand.

  • Even though they sound awkward, are they grammatically correct? – bkostas Nov 29 '20 at 9:02
  • In the first sentence, did you mean 'teach' instead of ''learn'? – Dhanishtha Ghosh Nov 29 '20 at 9:06
  • @DhanishthaGhosh If you are taught something, you learn it. I wasn't sure whether the OP meant 'easier to teach' or 'easier to learn'. – Kate Bunting Nov 29 '20 at 9:11
  • I meant "easier to teach those subjects to children". I have another question though. Today I found this sentence: "To be fully enjoyed, films need to be seen in a cinema". Does this sound awkward too? I do not completely understand why I cannot use the structure to+passive – bkostas Nov 30 '20 at 8:41
  • The fact that I misunderstood your first sentence demonstrates why it was not a good idea to use the passive in it! I didn't say you couldn't use the passive, just that it makes the second sentence more complicated. The sentence about films works using the passive. You would have to make that one more complicated to turn it into the active voice, by saying something like 'For the viewer to enjoy them fully...' – Kate Bunting Nov 30 '20 at 9:09

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