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These can be very confusing for non-native English speakers. Clichés are stereotyped phrases and context determines whether a cliché is being used. Often used in politics, here are some examples:
“The war against inflation”
“Light at the end of the tunnel”
“Fit for purpose”
“Singing from the same hymn-sheet”
Should students be encouraged to stick to plain speaking, rather than use clichés?
Oscar Wilde was known for reversing clichés:
“Work is the curse of the drinking classes”.
The irony was that reversing the cliché produced a new cliché.
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