pile of books
skip main nav
 Ling 131: Language & Style

Topic 3 (session A) - Patterns, Deviations, Style and Meaning > Parallelism: non-literary examples > Task B

skip topic navigation
Session Overview
Overview of foregrounding, deviation and parallelism
Deviation: non - literary examples
Deviation: literary examples
Parallelism: non-literary examples
Parallelism: literary examples
Useful Links

Parallelism: non-literary examples

Task B - Unilever

Unilever, the makers of the washing powder Persil, ran the following advertising slogan for a number of years:

Persil washes whiter

This slogan was effective for two reasons.

  • Firstly, it is grammatically deviant. It is a comparative structure which has no object of comparison. This enabled those reading the slogan to compare Persil mentally with whatever washing powder they used, and so go away with the message that Persil washed whiter than their particular washing powder. This use of the uncompared comparative is quite common in advertising slogans, for obvious reasons!

  • Secondly, the slogan exhibits some parallelism.

Identify the parallelism (at what linguistic level does it operate and what kind of parallelism is it?) and say what kind of effect it has.

our answer


to the top
Next: Task C - 'Opposite meaning' next

Home ¦ Outline ¦ Contents ¦ Glossary