City University of Hong Kong CLASS CLASS
Making Sense of Grammar
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asked Dec 16, 2020 in Questions about Chinese Grammar by Ariel (34,470 points) | 46 views

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Affirmative-negative questions are often used to introduce a rhetorical tone, particularly when introduced by phrases like 你说 nǐ shuō (lit. ‘What do you say to that?’):

你说这件事怪不怪?

Nǐ shuō zhè jiàn shì guài bú guài ?

Don’t you think this is strange?

你说她这个人厉害不厉害?

Nǐ shuō tā zhè gè rén lì hài bú lì hài ?

She is really tough/formidable, isn’t she?/ Don’t you think she is really tough /formidable?

你说这种工作难不难?

Nǐ shuō zhè zhǒng gōng zuò nán bú nán ?

This is a difficult job, isn’t it?/Don’t you think this is a difficult job?

[1] Yip, P. C., Rimmington, D., Xiaoming, Z., & Henson, R. (2009). Basic Chinese: a grammar and workbook. Taylor & Francis.

answered Dec 16, 2020 by Ariel (34,470 points)

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