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Grammatical metaphor: Nominalization

Nominalization examples

Hunting for nominalizations

By now you should be getting a rough idea of what a nominalized process looks like. It is usually a series of processes or events taking place over a period of time that have been packaged up into a complex thing, and often it doesn’t say who or what actually did the process.


In the snippets below, try to find and highlight the nominalized events and any verbal groups you see.

And the birth of competitive examinations for the French and British civil services, although centuries behind the Chinese, boosted equality of opportunity.

Despite the general evolution over the centuries from fate and necessity to freedom and choice in the work we do, there remain considerable barriers facing some of those who wish to pursue their passions and use their talents.

The genocide of Bosnian Muslims, like that of Chechens and Tatars in the Soviet Union, Jews in Nazi Germany, and Chams and Vietnamese in Cambodia, was a state-directed operation.

Only the changing power-struggles of the Successors allowed Athenian democrats to restore their system, briefly in 318, more lastingly in 307.

But Haiti’s poverty forced its people to remain dependent on forest-derived charcoal for fuel, thereby accelerating the destruction of its last remaining forests.

Collapse Jared Diamond

Exploitation of valuable trees in the Republic increased in the 1860s and 1870s, resulting already then in some local depletion or extinction of valuable tree species.

Just as Europe's overseas expansion was preceded and accompanied by internal exploration, so the Christian age of worldwide missions was preceded and accompanied by evangelization at home.