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    Allen Farber's Avatar
    Allen Farber Posts: 190, Reputation: 1
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    #1

    May 16, 2017, 04:55 PM
    Meaning of "Nuance"?
    So despite having read the definition of "nuance" too many times to count, I still can't grasp the meaning. I've search every single definition website for help and the only common definition I could find was "subtle difference". But when I plug the definition into sentences that have the word, it makes no sense. Like in the context of a "nuanced discussion". So it would be a discussion with subtle differences? Subtle differences in comparison to what? Like what would it be different from? Could someone please explain to me what nuance means in the following contexts:

    "The complex and tragic relationship could have been a high point in the season, but that would have required nuance and after 3 seasons now, I just can't make excuses anymore."

    "Ms. Fyfield is remarkably thorough in her psychological profiles, giving subtle nuances to characters who are mere passers-by in this psychodrama"

    "A rich, artistic performance filled with nuance"

    Like it makes zero sense when I plug in the definition that every website and every dictionary gives me. Like "A rich, artistic performance filled with subtle differences". The main problem is it doesn't say what the nuanced thing is subtly different from. Any help will be appreciated.
    Wondergirl's Avatar
    Wondergirl Posts: 37,770, Reputation: 5427
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    #2

    May 16, 2017, 05:12 PM
    • THESAURUS.COM


    Synonyms for nuance


    noun slight difference; shading

    Allen Farber's Avatar
    Allen Farber Posts: 190, Reputation: 1
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    #3

    May 16, 2017, 05:48 PM
    Still doesn't really make any sense. Like distinction and difference mean the same thing. And the everything else doesn't make any sense when I plug it in either. Like "The complex and tragic relationship could have been a high point in the season, but that would have required subtlety"? That doesn't make sense at all, or at least to me anyhow.
    Wondergirl's Avatar
    Wondergirl Posts: 37,770, Reputation: 5427
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    #4

    May 16, 2017, 05:55 PM
    Quote Originally Posted by Allen Farber View Post
    Still doesn't really make any sense. Like distinction and difference mean the same thing. And the everything else doesn't make any sense when I plug it in either. Like "The complex and tragic relationship could have been a high point in the season, but that would have required subtlety"? That doesn't make sense at all, or at least to me anyhow.
    I'm able to substitute a credible synonym into each sentence. Is this homework? or idle curiosity?
    Allen Farber's Avatar
    Allen Farber Posts: 190, Reputation: 1
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    #5

    May 17, 2017, 03:29 AM
    Idle curiosity. I hear people use it often and I really want to know what it means. And I'm not saying it isn't credible or right, I'm just saying it still doesn't make any sense to me.
    smoothy's Avatar
    smoothy Posts: 25,495, Reputation: 2853
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    #6

    May 17, 2017, 04:53 AM
    Difference between being blunt and direct... VS. a much less in your face approach (nuanced) to getting a point across, some could say the Diplomatic way.
    talaniman's Avatar
    talaniman Posts: 53,915, Reputation: 10852
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    #7

    May 17, 2017, 05:17 AM
    Can you see the difference between a friend smiling and waving when they say hello, as you pass each other, as opposed to the same friend just saying hi, and keep walking? What information do you glean from those encounters?

    Subtle nuances are the way humans communicate if you are paying close attention as a way to know more about them. Recognizing the nuance in people is a way to gain more information about them. It can be as varied as how someone holds his cigarette, or eats his soup, or speaks to you, or others.

    It also indicates your own level of understanding the people you encounter, and interact with. The simplest way to explain it is understand the small differences in the way people see, and express themselves about various situations.
    Allen Farber's Avatar
    Allen Farber Posts: 190, Reputation: 1
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    #8

    May 17, 2017, 03:11 PM
    All that I understand. But I don't understand how that ties into how it's used in the sentences I provided.

    Could you please give an example of an in-your-face approach and a nuanced approach to help me distinguish the two. I'd be very grateful
    talaniman's Avatar
    talaniman Posts: 53,915, Reputation: 10852
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    #9

    May 17, 2017, 03:21 PM
    Quote Originally Posted by Allen Farber View Post
    Still doesn't really make any sense. Like distinction and difference mean the same thing. And the everything else doesn't make any sense when I plug it in either. Like "The complex and tragic relationship could have been a high point in the season, but that would have required subtlety"? That doesn't make sense at all, or at least to me anyhow.
    They are say there was NO nuance and had there been things would have been better. Infer: required subtlety (quiet nuance).

    Do you not relate to people on a deeper level than words?

    Can't you read body language, and tone in others? Facial changes, and voice pitch that leads you to act appropriately, or read something about that person?

    These are the tools of nuance.
    Often it's a gut feeling.
    teacherjenn4's Avatar
    teacherjenn4 Posts: 3,997, Reputation: 468
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    #10

    May 17, 2017, 07:00 PM
    I used the word nuance while in a parent meeting the other day. I'd explain it as a subtlety. When one of my students doesn't understand how their sentence doesn't make sense, it often has a mistake commonly made by an English learner. Because they aren't fluent in English, they often don't understand the subtleties, or nuances of the language.

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