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Passive and active voices are ways of making statements, in which the agent can either be the subject of the sentence or the object of a preposition. In English, therefore, we can say:
1 The dog bit the man. (active)
2 The man was bitten by the dog. (passive)
In (1) the agent (the thing performing the action, i.e. the dog) is the grammatical subject of the sentence. In (2) the patient (the thing receiving the action, the man) is the grammatical subject and the agent (the dog) the object of the preposition “by” in the sentence's Object slot.
According to the theory of generative or transformational grammar advanced by Chomsky, it is possible to transform active to passive and passive to active sentences, and thus there would be a one-to-one correspondence between them.
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