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Doubt as a Janus word
Posted: 31 October 2012 06:57 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 16 ]
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Except that you seem to be the only one doing it.  I’m not putting you down or saying you’re wrong, just that your analysis is not, in fact, ordinary.

Well I suppose that’s a fair point. If no one else has a problem with it then that means it is not a problem. I have my answer, thank you all for this information and your patience.

The topic did make me think about cases where the possibility of the use of overnegation could cause ambiguity.

If an actor says “I’m never going to wear no shoes to the beach again”, it could be that they are using common overnegation and what they mean is that they will never wear shoes to the beach again, or they might not be using overnegation, and what they mean is that they are never going to go to the beach shoeless again. Of course, “the potential for ambiguity” is always with us in English, and except in extreme circumstances it is not going to cost anyone dearly. The reader or hearer would pick up clues about which was meant by the formality of the register used in the surrounding sentences, from other information provided earlier, and possibly from the dialect of the speaker.

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Posted: 31 October 2012 09:38 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 17 ]
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Just my take on the matter, but I would think that in the dialects where negative concord is common it would be more likely “I ain’t never gonna wear no shoes to the beach again” if the speaker meant that they would always go barefoot to the beach.  The “never” might be optional.

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