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    #1

    not really keen vs not keen

    Hi,

    What is the difference between "not really keen" vs "not keen"

    I want to know more about the word "really" in general. Other examples...("not really good" vs "not good"...) ("do not really want" vs "do not want")

    Thanks

  1. EnglishRyan's Avatar
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    #2

    Re: not really keen vs not keen

    Hi goodstudent (how aptly named you are!)

    'Really' tends to soften the phrase you couple it with. So 'not really keen' might be a phrase you'd use to decline an invitation politely.

    For example:

    A: Would you like to join me for some dumplings?

    B: No thanks. I'm not really keen on Chinese food.



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    #3

    Re: not really keen vs not keen

    Quote Originally Posted by goodstudent View Post
    Hi,

    What is the difference between "not really keen" vs "not keen"

    I want to know more about the word "really" in general. Other examples...("not really good" vs "not good"...) ("do not really want" vs "do not want")

    Thanks
    The difference with/without "really" is in the degree of keeness, goodness, wanting etc.

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    #4

    Re: not really keen vs not keen

    I want to know more about the word "really" in general.


    NOT A TEACHER


    (1) Since "really" is my favorite word, may I contribute to your thread?

    (2) People have different ideas about that word. It is often difficult to know what it modifies. It often depends on how you say it:

    (a) He is really NICE. = He is very nice.
    (b) He is REALLY (!) nice. = I am telling you the truth.

    (3) Here are a few ideas that I think (repeat: think) are correct (I hope).

    (a) Really = I am telling you the truth. Believe me.
    (b) Really = very.
    (c) Really = very much.

    (d) Some people think that all Americans are rich. Really, not all Americans are rich. (I am telling you the truth. Believe me.)

    (e) You are really intelligent. (very)

    (f) I really appreciate your help. (very much)

    (g) Tom: Como esta Vd.?
    Mona: Wow! You speak Spanish.
    Tom (smiling): I do not really speak Spanish. Really! (Oh, sure, I know a few phrases, but in reality I certainly do not know that beautiful language. I am telling you the truth.)

    (4) I, too, am eager to see what the great teachers tell us about "really." Really!

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    #5

    Re: not really keen vs not keen

    Quote Originally Posted by EnglishRyan View Post
    'Really' tends to soften the phrase you couple it with. So 'not really keen' might be a phrase you'd use to decline an invitation politely.
    I agree in this example, but 'really' can also add emphasis: "I am really not keen ...".(Note the word order). This is similar to The Parser's 'really intelligent' example, though we cannot say 'very not keen'.

    In 'not really keen' or 'not very/particularly/especially keen', the implication seems to be that it may be a little harsh to say that you don't like something, so you say instead that you don't really(strongly) like it.

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    #6

    Re: not really keen vs not keen

    Quote Originally Posted by TheParser View Post
    (f) I really appreciate your help. (very much)
    Could this not be: "I truly appreciate your help?"



    I also want to reiterate 5jj's point:

    In 'not really keen' or 'not very/particularly/especially keen', the implication seems to be that it may be a little harsh to say that you don't like something, so you say instead that you don't really(strongly) like it.

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