1. Cerrus
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    Cerrus Senior Member

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    Have Not and Haven't uses

    Discussion in 'Word Mechanics' started by Cerrus, Sep 10, 2012.

    Recently my sister asked me while I was listening to some music, "Haven't you heard all of their music before?" and so I thought about it and answered, "No." because my thinking was that she asked me if I haven't heard it before in which I had. Sorry if this sounds confusing. Are people just using "haven't" when they should just say "have" or am I thinking of this wrong?
     
  2. ChickenFreak
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    ChickenFreak Contributing Member Contributor

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    "Haven't you blahed?" means that the person asking thinks that you've blahed and is asking to make sure that they're right. That may not be the logical translation, but it is what it means.
     
  3. digitig
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    digitig Contributing Member Contributor

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    It simply isn't worth looking for logic in the way we respond to negative questions in English, is it?
     
  4. mammamaia
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    mammamaia nit-picker-in-chief Contributor

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    the real problem is how to answer one!... such as:

    'don't you know i don't want to not love you?
     
  5. EdFromNY
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    EdFromNY Hope to improve with age Supporter Contributor

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    Ah, the triple negative, such as "not unmeaningless" (with thanks to James Thurber).
     
  6. digitig
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    digitig Contributing Member Contributor

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    The safest way is probably to avoid a direct answer. "How could you even ask that?"
     
  7. Roger Morris
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    Roger Morris New Member

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    Have not and haven't are similar in their usage because " haven't " is " have not " combined.
     

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