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  1. #11
    Rover_KE is offline Moderator
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    Default Re: T. Ray don't know nothing.

    We are not the Grammar Police. People who wilfully choose to distort the language are free do so with impunity, despite our disapproval.

    We are here to help those with exams to pass or who want to improve their own standard of English.

    We do not attempt to defend the indefensible; we just tell you that it happens and recommend that you do not emulate it.

    Rover

  2. #12
    sunbride is offline Newbie
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    Default Re: T. Ray don't know nothing.

    To Grumpy: I have looked it up and found 'He say' in the lyrics online, and in my original CD booklet also printed 'he say'. So it is not just what I may have misheard. I understand that 'he said' also can be found in other versions and the singer can cut off the ends, however I am still a bit confused about it.

    To Rover: I just wanted to understand whether my examples were grammatically wrong and not accepted or they could be used in certain situations which I was not familiar with, because English is not my native language. Furthermore, as I mentioned, the book of Sue Monk Kidd is a recommended text for CPE Exam. It is always confusing to find something similar in a book / song written by native speakers. That's all.
    Last edited by sunbride; 05-Oct-2012 at 05:48.

  3. #13
    TheParser is offline Key Member
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    Default Re: T. Ray don't know nothing.

    ***** NOT A TEACHER *****

    Hello, Sunbride:


    Many years ago, I was commenting on the "bad" English in popular music when a young person told me that I

    was all wet (wrong). He explained that the one-syllable "don't" is often used instead of the correct two-syllable

    "doesn't" because it fits better into the rhythm of the lyrics.


    James

  4. #14
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    Grumpy is offline Senior Member
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    Default Re: T. Ray don't know nothing.

    In that case, I reckon that whoever transcribed the lyrics online and on the CD case also misheard what Chris Rea sang! Seriously, if he did occasionally sing "He say", then he probably did it for dramatic effect; thinking it sounded a bit more "edgy" and "street-wise" than using the correct term. He could get away with it in a song: don't try it in normal written or spoken English.

    The same goes for "Don't know nothing". Many people mangle the English language, either through simple ignorance of the correct usage, or knowingly to create a specific effect. The latter is perfectly legitimate, but that doesn't make it grammatically correct.

  5. #15
    sunbride is offline Newbie
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    Default Re: T. Ray don't know nothing.

    To James: It sounds strange to me, I mean using 'don't' instead of 'doesn't' in lyrics, just because the first fits better..., probably because my own native language has very strict inflexion rules for each person singular and plural. We can use (very rarely) grammatically wrong forms to make an effect, but in this case I surely can tell you what kind of effect we create this way. I suppose the 'young person' you mention, is a native American. Thank you for the useful information, I'll surely remember your explanation any time I come across a similar use of English. And I will learn 'to be all wet' as well.

    To Grumpy: In this case it's a pity that some (or several?) transcripts contains 'he say' in the lyrics of this song, especially because learners of English try (very hard) to follow the rules of the language and they have no doubts when coming across any texts (spoken or written) by native speakers. So you say 'don't know nothing' creates an edgy feeling, too, and - as far as I can summarize the comments above - it also has a special emphasis. I must realize again that English cannot be compared with other languages, perhaps because it is so widely used. Thank you for help.

  6. #16
    TheParser is offline Key Member
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    Default Re: T. Ray don't know nothing.

    ***** NOT A TEACHER *****


    Hello,


    It is I again!

    You stated that people always speak grammatically in your native language.

    In English, however, what is "grammatical" is changing. The people are changing it. It is a very democratic

    process.

    For example, probably 95% of people now say "It is me."

    Furthermore, sometimes there are social reasons for speaking "bad" English. For example, if a big, tough American football

    player said "It is I," some of his friends might think that he was "strange."

    Today we hear (from very well-educated people) things such as:

    Me and my friend went to Disneyland. (My friend and I ....)
    This secret is just between you and I. (between you and me)



    James

  7. #17
    sunbride is offline Newbie
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    Default Re: T. Ray don't know nothing.

    I understand. Hungarian natives do make "mistakes" but usually not grammatical ones. Our language is also changing - like any other living thing - but perhaps not so rapidly as English, because Hungarian is much more separated.
    As for your examples, they are - I suppose - more common among English learners than 'don't' instead of 'doesn't'.
    Thanks again.

  8. #18
    Chicken Sandwich's Avatar
    Chicken Sandwich is offline Senior Member
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    Default Re: T. Ray don't know nothing.

    Quote Originally Posted by sunbride View Post
    To James: It sounds strange to me, I mean using 'don't' instead of 'doesn't' in lyrics, just because the first fits better..., probably because my own native language has very strict inflexion rules for each person singular and plural. We can use (very rarely) grammatically wrong forms to make an effect, but in this case I surely can tell you what kind of effect we create this way. I suppose the 'young person' you mention, is a native American. Thank you for the useful information, I'll surely remember your explanation any time I come across a similar use of English. And I will learn 'to be all wet' as well.
    Maybe it's the fact that I've seen about 1,000 American movies, but to me, 'It don't matter to me what all them people say' doesn't sound all that unusual. I wouldn't say or write it (and I don't recommend that you do), but I've heard it so many times that it doesn't sound weird or unusual. It makes sense in the right context.
    Last edited by Chicken Sandwich; 05-Oct-2012 at 15:09.

  9. #19
    TheParser is offline Key Member
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    Default Re: T. Ray don't know nothing.

    Quote Originally Posted by sunbride View Post
    As for your examples, they are - I suppose - more common among English learners than 'don't' instead of 'doesn't'.
    ***** NOT A TEACHER *****

    1. I cannot answer your question.

    2. But I think that I am correct that most native speakers would never use "don't" instead of "doesn't."

    Some of those same people, however, might say "between you and I" because they actually think that they

    are speaking proper English. They probably feel that I is more elegant than the "lowly" me. I also suspect that

    some of them vaguely remember their teachers telling them that "It is I" is correct. So they become confused and

    just throw in an elegant I. "Between you and I" may also be traced to the same reason.


    James


    P.S. Come to think of it, since learners usually learn "book English," probably more learners say "It is I" than do native speakers!
    Last edited by TheParser; 05-Oct-2012 at 16:16.

  10. #20
    sunbride is offline Newbie
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    Default Re: T. Ray don't know nothing.

    Quote Originally Posted by Chicken Sandwich View Post
    It makes sense in the right context.
    I absolutely accept it if natives think that it is right. I just wanted to understand what could be 'the right context' you were talking about.

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