OceanLake
 supporter, 1131 posts
Wed 30 Sep 2020
at 06:39
Why Positive Negative wording?
This excerpt from a Sherlock Holmes story (The Six Napoleons), caught my eye:

"Well," said Lestrade, "I've seen you handle a good many cases, Mr. Holmes, but I don't know that I ever knew a more workmanlike one than that. We're not jealous of you at Scotland Yard. No, sir, we are very proud of you, and if you come down to-morrow, there's not a man, from the oldest inspector to the youngest constable, who wouldn't be glad to shake you by the hand."

Why didn't Dr. Doyle write: "....every man, from the oldest inspector to the youngest constable, would be glad to shake you by the hand." What is it about the English language?

And, for that matter, why do people say, "Don't forget" instead of "Remember". (Or "Not bad" instead of "Good".)
Dirigible
 member, 227 posts
Wed 30 Sep 2020
at 07:34
Why Positive Negative wording?
Because they convey different shades and emphases of meaning.

This message was last edited by the user at 07:35, Wed 30 Sept.

OceanLake
 supporter, 1132 posts
Wed 30 Sep 2020
at 11:14
Why Positive Negative wording?
Yes, but why is one more common than the other?
donsr
 member, 2068 posts
Wed 30 Sep 2020
at 11:18
Why Positive Negative wording?
it is also the  way folks talk, and how you , as an author, wish them to sound.

My elves   , and in my Space Game, certain Aliens , never use  contractions. To convey a period piece  you want the   words to reflect that. You  wouldn't have a Civil War  soldier   ask, " Yo!..gimmie some of the  beans, Brah.."

 I watched alot of Sherlock holmes, my favs  are with Jermey Brett. the  subtle differences  in 'street folks", Aristocrats, and those in between, help flover  the  scenes. And? as far as Lastrade? he always hops the line from  grudging  congrates, to  snide retorts.
engine
 member, 789 posts
 There's a brain alright
 but it's made out of meat
Wed 30 Sep 2020
at 15:08
Why Positive Negative wording?
In reply to OceanLake (msg # 1):

Both constructions are used, and others. They're pretty interchangable, and have more to do with culture and mood than the manguage itself.

Sometimes I find that a negative approach is oddly more compelling. It can seem more serious and sincere, because it is reminiscent of a sharper, angrier tone that demands more attention and brooks less contradiction.
praguepride
 member, 1698 posts
 "Hugs for the Hugs God!"
 - Warhammer Fluffy-K
Wed 30 Sep 2020
at 15:14
Why Positive Negative wording?
One thing to keep in mind is there is a subtle difference in the two.

"Every man wants to shake your hand" makes it seem a celebrity status, like they would cross the street to shake hands.

"Not a man wouldn't shake your hand" makes it more of an honor or good standing. There is no reason someone would be upset with him and would refuse him if he offered his hand.

It's subtle but quite different. The first implies celebrity, the second implies he is in good standing with the public.
Dirigible
 member, 228 posts
Wed 30 Sep 2020
at 18:29
Re: Why Positive Negative wording?
OceanLake:
Yes, but why is one more common than the other?

I don't understand, which are you claiming is more common?
Eur512
 member, 825 posts
Wed 30 Sep 2020
at 18:33
Why Positive Negative wording?
This is normal for Russians.

The sentence that translates idiomatically as "Please tell me where the _____ is?"  translates literally as "You will not say where the _____ is?"

Russians are weird.
praguepride
 member, 1699 posts
 "Hugs for the Hugs God!"
 - Warhammer Fluffy-K
Wed 30 Sep 2020
at 18:59
Why Positive Negative wording?
I think language is weird.

For example why the heck are the English days of the week kind of sort of named after Norse gods but also Roman gods and just a random

Monday = Moon's Day
Tuesday = Tyr's Day
Wednesday = Odin's Day (helps to know it is derived from Wodin)
Thursday = Thor's Day
Friday = Freja's Day
Saturday = Saturn's Day
Sunday = Sun Day

Well it's because Old English that these are derived from are heavily influenced by both the Germanic people that, depending on the point in history, worshipped Norse gods as well as the Romans that conquered the lands in central Germany.

Now the question is why don't germans speak english if old english comes from that area and that is another story for another time.


https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Interpretatio_germanica
Eur512
 member, 826 posts
Wed 30 Sep 2020
at 19:38
Why Positive Negative wording?
In reply to praguepride (msg # 9):

If you like that, you will like even better the Scandinavian days of the week.  They kept the old Germanic.  Monday, Tuesday, etc.

BUT... Instead of Saturday (the ancient Germanics did not have Saturn) they have  lördag, lřrdag, or laurdag depending on the country.

This comes from the old germanic word for that day of the week.

It means "Bath Day".

It gets even better when you see what Bath Day was for an ancient Germanic tribe.

No bathtubs.  The entire village goes to the river, and together, they have a big community bath.
OceanLake
 supporter, 1133 posts
Wed 30 Sep 2020
at 20:22
Why Positive Negative wording?
I've heard "Don't forget" much more often than "Remember". Some have opined that the auditor is apt to "hear" the "forget".
phoenix9lives
 member, 1037 posts
 GENE POLICE!  YOU!
 GET OUTTA THE POOL!
Wed 30 Sep 2020
at 21:00
Why Positive Negative wording?
There is also the phrase "Never Forget", as opposed to "Always Remember".
Heath
 member, 2955 posts
 If my opinion changes,
 The answer is still 42.
Thu 1 Oct 2020
at 00:54
Why Positive Negative wording?
And then there's the movie title "Never Stop Never Stopping" which seems to epitomize this whole crazy shade of negatives in parody.
facemaker329
 member, 7255 posts
 Gaming for over 30
 years, and counting!
Thu 1 Oct 2020
at 04:05
Why Positive Negative wording?
In reply to OceanLake (msg # 3):

I'm not sure one actually is more common than the other, in general use.  In literary use, as pointed out, it's a more sophisticated and nuanced way of saying something...and since popular literary characters tend to be portrayed as more intelligent and sophisticated than your average person, language like that which creates subtle nuances is a popular voice for those characters to have.  But if you sat down and analyzed the phrases people actually use in their common vernacular, I don't think you'd see a noticeable difference in nuanced vs direct phrasing popularity.
praguepride
 member, 1700 posts
 "Hugs for the Hugs God!"
 - Warhammer Fluffy-K
Fri 2 Oct 2020
at 04:42
Re: Why Positive Negative wording?
Heath:
And then there's the movie title "Never Stop Never Stopping" which seems to epitomize this whole crazy shade of negatives in parody.



Connor 4 Real is an american treasure!

Seriously I am a big Lonely Island fan and for some reason Hunter the Hungry's songs really resonated with me so I ended up picking up the soundtrack namely for Chris Redd's three raps >_<
drewalt
 subscriber, 110 posts
Fri 2 Oct 2020
at 22:00
Re: Why Positive Negative wording?
If there are A and B, the complement of A is not necessarily B.
OceanLake
 supporter, 1134 posts
Sat 3 Oct 2020
at 02:57
Re: Why Positive Negative wording?
0.99999...to infinity = 1.00000...to infinity,
but does 1.00000...to infinity = 9.99999...to infinity?
Tileira
 member, 522 posts
Tue 6 Oct 2020
at 09:43
Re: Why Positive Negative wording?
"don't forget" is a warning against forgetting. It would be bad for you to forget. When it is good for you to remember, you will more often hear "I'll remember that". Good to remember and bad to forget are not the same thing.

"everyone would want to shake your hand" is flattery, which Holmes would not appreciate. While it implies inclusion of every man at the yard, that is less definite than an excplicit exclusion. "there is no man that would not" is framed around the number of people who would not: no man. The positive wording would have to be something like "every last man" to get a similar effect.

But you also have to take into account, again, the line between flattery and compliments and the culture present in the story world. In this, a working class man giving a compliment to a gentleman in 1880s England. There is a whole group of literature about the middle and upper class arm-chair detectives literally outclassing the police (of which Holmes is one). This negative approach phrasing validates Lestrade's opinion: a bland compliment would make him look stupid. This phrasing is thoughful, actually conveys a stronger feeling of pride (partly because he takes more time to describe it) and honours both Holmes and the men of the yard.
OceanLake
 supporter, 1135 posts
Wed 7 Oct 2020
at 07:03
Re: Why Positive Negative wording?
I'm impressed.
Heath
 member, 2956 posts
 If my opinion changes,
 The answer is still 42.
Wed 7 Oct 2020
at 08:16
Re: Why Positive Negative wording?
No one would not be impressed. :)
OceanLake
 supporter, 1136 posts
Wed 7 Oct 2020
at 20:05
Re: Why Positive Negative wording?
None would be unimpressed.
madkeeper
 member, 22 posts
Tue 13 Oct 2020
at 17:56
Re: Why Positive Negative wording?
OceanLake:
I've heard "Don't forget" much more often than "Remember". Some have opined that the auditor is apt to "hear" the "forget".


I myself use “make sure” as the positive version of “don’t forget”... for a 40/60 split.
praguepride
 member, 1703 posts
 "Hugs for the Hugs God!"
 - Warhammer Fluffy-K
Tue 13 Oct 2020
at 20:57
Re: Why Positive Negative wording?
Make sure you don't forget not to be unimpressed
OceanLake
 supporter, 1137 posts
Wed 14 Oct 2020
at 06:32
Re: Why Positive Negative wording?
And love language English with which we are blessed.