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  1. #11
    henz988 is offline Member
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    Default re: Is this right?

    I have been learning English for years and we are rarely exposed to nonstandard English. I think if we learn English just for business activities, we’d better not learn those rural and regional expresions, though we sometimes want to learn some to get a closer relationship with our partners.
    That said, I am afraid if we always speak like textbooks (in fact it is impossible,for we‘ll surely make mistakes), will it be considered that we are not easy to get accessible to?

  2. #12
    2006 is offline Banned
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    Default re: Is this right?

    Under Nonstandard English in riverkid's last post, there is the patently false statement that "These nonstandard varieties of English are no less logical (my underlining) or systematic than Standard English.

    Logically "don't say nothing" means 'say something', just as "I don't have no money" logically means 'I have some money.'

    "I have no money." means I am without money. So how does "I don't have no money." logically mean the same thing?

    I don't understand the motive of those who constantly rail against the concept of correct and incorrect English on an ESL site.

  3. #13
    2006 is offline Banned
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    Default re: Is this right?

    Quote Originally Posted by henz988 View Post
    I have been learning English for years and we are rarely exposed to nonstandard English. I think if we learn English just for business activities, we’d better not learn those rural and regional expresions, though we sometimes want to learn some to get a closer relationship with our partners.
    That said, I am afraid if we always speak like textbooks (in fact it is impossible,for we‘ll surely make mistakes), will it be considered that we are not easy to get accessible to?
    I think that the problem of 'speaking like textbooks' is not due to a shortage of incorrect English. Rather it is due to the absence of the slang, idioms and shortcuts that are typical of the language spoken by native speakers.

  4. #14
    Soup's Avatar
    Soup is offline VIP Member
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    Default re: Is this right?

    Quote Originally Posted by riverkid View Post
    Given the long and sordid past that is prescriptivism, Soup, I think that ESLs also have to know that nonstandard does not mean incorrect, it does not mean bad English, it does not mean bad grammar.
    Agreed. Again, it's a completely different topic.

  5. #15
    Soup's Avatar
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    Default re: Is this right?

    Quote Originally Posted by 2006 View Post
    Logically "don't say nothing" means 'say something',
    It's more a matter of dialect.
    Although they are not used in Standard English, double negatives are used in various American English dialects, including African American Vernacular English, and in the East London Cockney and East Anglian dialects.
    unmarked
    Don't say nothing.
    => Don't say anything.

    marked
    Don't say nothing. (That is,) say something.
    if there is very heavy stress on "don't" or a specific plaintive stress on "nothing," then it would be a grammatically correct way of emphasizing that the speaker would rather have "something" than "nothing" at all.

    In some languages (or varieties of a language,) negative forms are consistently used throughout the sentence to express a single negation. In other languages, a double negative is used to negate a negation, and therefore, it resolves to a positive. In the former case, triple and quadruple negation can also be seen, which leads to the terms multiple negation or negative concord.

    Source

    Negative concord, popularly called "double negation", as in I didn't go nowhere; if the sentence is negative, all negatable forms are negated. This contrasts with Standard English, where a double negative is considered a positive (although this wasn't always so; see double negative). There is also "triple" or "multiple negation", as in the phrase I don't know nothing about no one no more, which would be "I don't know anything about anybody anymore" in Standard English.

    Source

  6. #16
    2006 is offline Banned
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    Default re: Is this right?

    Quote Originally Posted by Soup View Post
    It's more a matter of dialect.
    Although they are not used in Standard English, double negatives are used in various American English dialects, including African American Vernacular English, and in the East London Cockney and East Anglian dialects.
    unmarked
    Don't say nothing.
    => Don't say anything.

    marked
    Don't say nothing. (That is,) say something.
    if there is very heavy stress on "don't" or a specific plaintive stress on "nothing," then it would be a grammatically correct way of emphasizing that the speaker would rather have "something" than "nothing" at all.

    In some languages (or varieties of a language,) negative forms are consistently used throughout the sentence to express a single negation. In other languages, a double negative is used to negate a negation, and therefore, it resolves to a positive. In the former case, triple and quadruple negation can also be seen, which leads to the terms multiple negation or negative concord.

    Source

    Negative concord, popularly called "double negation", as in I didn't go nowhere; if the sentence is negative, all negatable forms are negated. This contrasts with Standard English, where a double negative is considered a positive (although this wasn't always so; see double negative). There is also "triple" or "multiple negation", as in the phrase I don't know nothing about no one no more, which would be "I don't know anything about anybody anymore" in Standard English.

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    So what is the practical point of the above? Are English learners supposed to note everything you said here and try to remember it?

  7. #17
    tedtmc is offline Key Member
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    Default re: Is this right?

    don't sign nothing
    You ain't got nothing to lose.


    Those are typical American slang, aren't they?

  8. #18
    2006 is offline Banned
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    Default re: Is this right?

    Quote Originally Posted by tedtmc View Post
    don't sign nothing
    You ain't got nothing to lose.

    Those are typical American slang, aren't they?
    I wouldn't call that slang. That's incorrect/non standard English.

    Slang is mostly an informal nonstandard vocabulary. (using unusual words and phrases in place of the regular words)

    a buck = a dollar
    bread = money
    hooch = hard liquor (like whiskey)
    my old lady = my wife
    he bought the farm = he died

  9. #19
    Soup's Avatar
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    Default re: Is this right?

    Quote Originally Posted by 2006 View Post
    So what is the practical point of the above? Are English learners supposed to note everything you said here and try to remember it?
    I'm not entirely sure what you are saying here.

  10. #20
    2006 is offline Banned
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    Default re: Is this right?

    Quote Originally Posted by Soup View Post
    I'm not entirely sure what you are saying here.
    I mean are the students reading our posts really supposed to remember that it would be quite okay to say "don't say nothing" when speaking to people in/from East London and East Anglia, even though it would be best to say "don't say anything" in most other places?

    And are they really going to understand/remember that "if there is very heavy stress on "don't" or a specific plaintive stress on "nothing," then it would be a grammatically correct way..."? Or will you just confuse/overwhelm them, especially middle and lower-level learners?

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