0

Assume a process that goes strictly from state A to state B to state C. I would like to emphasize the endpoints (i.e., A and C) and indicate that state C is probably reached only via state B.

To do so, I used the following sentence, which drew substantial criticism from co-authors for using the phrase "via the mediation of":

... revealed that several independent transitions from state A to state C occurred, probably via the mediation of state B.

What other phrase would you use to portray the correct relationships?

0

2 Answers 2

0

Other than being present in the process, state B does no mediation. So, e.g., children (a) reach adulthood (c) through youth (b). Insect eggs reach adulthood via larvae.

2
  • @KWinkler: Good point. But can you think of a phrase to emphasize that the process did not merely go from state A to state C but explicitly used the route via state B? Jul 26, 2016 at 13:31
  • Both "via" and "through" make that explicit. If probability is involved, then precede with "probably," e.g., "The victim traveled from his home to the mall, probably via Hwy X." Perhaps if you have a more concrete example -- it sounds almost as though state B might be being inferred rather than observed.
    – KWinker
    Jul 26, 2016 at 17:21
0

The phrase "intermediate state" should hep you here. It implies that B occurs on the way without implying that B influenced the transition.

... revealed that several independent transitions from state A to state C occurred, probably via the intermediate state B.

ODO:

intermediate ADJECTIVE

1 Coming between two things in time, place, order, character, etc.
‘an intermediate stage of development’
‘a cooled liquid intermediate between liquid and solid’

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.