Connectors and an introduction to complex meaning

Different types of meaning

Relatedness

At the very least, a connector can confirm that two things are related.

Look at the snippet below. Are the two sentences related?

Brian turned the wheel slightly. The plane immediately banked to the right.

Being next to each other, we can assume that the plane banked because Brian turned the wheel, but we can make that clearer using the word 'and'.

Brian turned the wheel slightly and the plane immediately banked to the right.

HatchetGary PaulsenSource

What about this next snippet? Why use 'and' to connect these two statements?

I’d shot the other one just below the chest, and he was dead too.

Burning for RevengeJohn MarsdenSource

In this case, 'and' is showing that the man's death was related to being shot below the chest. Let's see what we get without the connector.

I'd shot the other one just below the chest. He was dead too.

Without 'and', we're not sure whether the man died from being shot, or if he had died beforehand. The statements might be related, but not necessarily. We'd need to use context and clues from the rest of the text to figure it out.

Let's write our own compound sentences using 'and' to show a relationship between two statements.

I bought some carrots and the family had a casserole for dinner.

The woman in the black cloak mouthed some words, and Rajan lunged at me.

Advanced: To comma, or not to comma?
Your turn

You've probably noticed that the term 'relatedness' is pretty vague. In practice, using a word such as 'and' is often more about controlling the flow and rhythm within a paragraph than it is about creating complex meaning.

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