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Hi,

I think I have asked a question or two in the past about this, but since I don't understand the concept behind it still, I would like to ask you one more question.

Why does it have to be this way? Or does it really have to be that way?

write in that way

talk that way

act (in??) that way.

Mostly I think we use "in that way" in sentences. How do we know when to use "that way" or "in that way"?
Comments  
I think that 'in' is just an optional elision.
In general, I'd advise just using that way. That's how I would say it in all the examples you've cited.

In formal contexts, such as a paper for a class, you might use in that way.

CJ
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Thank you, CalifJim and Mr. M.

I think you can use both for those three examples I originally brought out, but my confusion deals with those cases where the word 'in' seems to be necessary/

Do you think 'in' is optional for this too?

doing in that way

I think we write like this when we normally follow the word 'way'. Why is that?

... the way in which everything happens is not how it might unravel.

Sorry if my question isn't clear.
Doing (in) that way is not natural-- an object is needed: doing it (in) that way. Again, the in is optional, with Jim's caveat-- in seems a bit more formal.

In your other example, you are looking at a different structure. Compare with your original phrases:

write (in) that way in which everyone can read it

talk (in) that way in which the women adore you

act (in) that way in which you know you can convince them.
Thank you for your patience, Mr. M.

I went googling upon getting your latest response and CalifJim's last response and came up with some simple sentences, as they look to me. I think CalifJim said that in general, he would advise just using that way. Did he make that advice for all general cases where 'in that way' is used or was he limiting his advice to some cases? Can I safely assume for the majority of cases where 'in that way', or possibly with 'in the way', the phrase 'that way', or 'the way' for the 'in the way', are used, the version without 'in' can be used if I was using it informally?

1. Aren't undergrads great in that way?

2. I don't think of you in that way.

3. We are best, just not in that way.

4. "I would never react in that way. I was upset," Tomlinson said.

How about this sentence of mine?

5. I think hope is a great sustaining force in that way.

You wrote:

In your other example, you are looking at a different structure. Compare with your original phrases:

write (in) that way in which everyone can read it

talk (in) that way in which the women adore you

act (in) that way in which you know you can convince them.

Is it just idiomatic in that when you have 'that way' or 'in that way' with the word 'way', the phrase 'in which' is used, rather than 'on which' , 'at which' or any other phrase a person without much familiarization of its idiomatic uses can come up without much thought?

Is it also idiomatic for the sentence to have 'on which' , rather than 'in which' or any other a person without much knowledge is its idiomatice uses can come up with after the word 'service'. Why does it have to be 'on which'? Take it as idiomatic and learn as such? Do you have some guidelines or tips I can follow?

Each member has a particular area of service on which he or she will focus.

Sorry for the long post. Please think of it as a sign of confusion.
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I accidentally found this page. I sometimes have to inevitably write in English, but Dutch is my mother tongue. English is easy for Dutch people in a way, but confusing in other ways, like when to use in, at, on, out, for, to, after, of, and so on, and when to use for instance a singular or plural form. There must be a reason for everything. But this could all be explained somewhere more accurately, psychologically. The simplest is the hardest to achieve and the other way round, I once read. Even regularly reading advanced English these dilemmas are still confusing and annoying. There is no use taking a complete course in English either for this reason.

In that way, in my mind,

is used for instance when referring to a more complex construction previously mentioned, including and integrating for instance a whole description, rather than putting something simple in a different way, and is used to faciliate this reference, to avoid confusion. For instance one can read ten pages, and then summarise: in this way, concluding or epitomising.

And 'that' gives more distance than 'this'.

These simple issues tell something about national identity, namely how something is achieved or organised in people's minds.