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I need a more formal expression for "saying that" here. I couldn't find another formal expression

Saying that rape culture is an environment where emotional and physical violence against women is the norm is, in a way, normalizing and excusing sexist behaviors and beliefs.

  • I suppose that replacing the participle with the infinitive might satisfy: "To say that..." But I'm not sure that has exactly the same nuance of meaning; it's more hypothetical. – Andrew Leach Mar 21 '15 at 21:48
  • 'Maintaining that' ... would possibly satisfy your tutor. – Edwin Ashworth Mar 21 '15 at 23:06
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Here are a few options for your consideration:

state verb: 3rd person present: states; past tense: stated; past participle: stated; gerund or present participle: stating

  1. express something definitely or clearly in speech or writing.

synonyms: express, voice, utter, put into words, declare, affirm, assert; see, Google state

In your example: To state [or, Stating] that rape culture is an environment where emotional and physical violence against women is the norm is, in a way, normalizing and excusing sexist behaviors and beliefs.

assert verb: gerund or present participle: asserting

state a fact or belief confidently and forcefully.

synonyms: declare, maintain, contend, argue, state; see, Google assert

In your example: To assert [or, Asserting ] that rape culture is an environment where emotional and physical violence against women is the norm is, in a way, normalizing and excusing sexist behaviors and beliefs.

characterize verb: gerund or present participle: characterizing

  1. describe the distinctive nature or features of.

synonyms: distinguish, make distinctive, mark, typify; see, Google characterize

In your example: To characterize [or, Characterizing ] rape culture as an environment where emotional and physical violence against women is the norm is, in a way, normalizing and excusing sexist behaviors and beliefs."

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Consider writing in the infinitive form:

To say that rape culture is an environment where emotional and physical violence is the norm is, in a way, to normalize and excuse sexist behaviors and beliefs.

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  • yes indeed, the second part would seem like a hypothesis rather than a fact. – Sarra Saidi Mar 21 '15 at 22:01
  • May be i should just omit it (saying that) the sentence would be then " rape culture is an environment, where emotional and physical violence against women is the norm and, where sexist behaviors and attitudes are normalized and excused." – Sarra Saidi Mar 21 '15 at 22:03
  • No, that changed the meaning entirely. Then it would mean that YOU claim that there is a rape "culture". The "saying that..." or "maintaining that..." or "claming that..." keeps you as an observer/commentator, separate from the beliefs you describe. – Brian Hitchcock Mar 22 '15 at 8:46
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I'd start the sentence differently by saying something like 'The statement that rape culture.... or 'To theorize that rape...' or even 'The idea/belief that rape culture...'

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