"你不是加拿大人吗?"

Translation:Aren't you Canadian?

November 17, 2017

78 Comments


https://www.duolingo.com/BenMcMilla2

This is a really awkward phrase in english. I think the closest you could really get would be "You're not Canadian are you?". "Aren't you Canadian?" suggests an expectation that the subject is Canadian and disbelief that they might not be.

November 18, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/Yomalyn

I agree with your assessment of the sentence meaning (expectation/disbelief). But in my opinion, "Aren't you ..X..?" isn't awkward at all, and is actually perfect in certain contexts. As you said, it suggests expectation, and is almost looking for confirmation of what you believe to be true.

Here's a silly example... Maybe you meet some people who look like this and they ask you to guess where they're from:

"... Aren't you Canadian?!?"
" 你不是加拿大人吗?"

While this exact sentence would rarely come up in conversation, here are some other negative questions that use the same structure:

"Aren't you going to work today?" (said to someone sleeping in) "Isn't the bookstore the other way?" "Wasn't that amazing?!?" "Don't you love duolingo?"

Of course others may disagree, but to my ear it sounds fine! (Native English speaker - Ontario, Canada .... and yes, I have a hat like that!)

November 20, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/clnoy

So, aren't you Canadian then?

December 4, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/EquanimousLingo

I can definitely see this question being used in a sitcom or at the end of a punchline, so context dictates use.

December 27, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/David01261659

@BenMcMilla2 that is exactly correct. To make it a perfectly neutral question "are you Canadian?" but still using this form, you say "ni shi bu shi jianada ren" -- which means "you are not are canadian." You can use "bu" to pose positive negative questions. Note that my example has no "ma" - "ma" is only used with yes/no questions. I hear this form about as often as the simpler "ni shi jianada ren ma?" (and actually, I DO hear this sentence occasionally, as for some reason they are shy to ask if I'm American.)

December 22, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/jo5i4h

This isn't an awkward sentence in English at all.

December 31, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/Margaretha757264

I wrote You are not Canadian, right? What's wrong with it?

November 19, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/AbaddonWan

你不是加拿大人吗? basically means “I thought you were a Canadian, how could I be wrong?” so it has the same meaning as 'you are a Canadian, right?'

November 23, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/Ellis930361

I wrote the same thing and got it wrong.

November 27, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/ALLintolearning3

"Aren't you a Canadian?" implies that I think that you are Canadian, but tell me if I am wrong. It is much closer to "You are a Canadian, isn't that so?" or "You are a Canadian, right?"

You are not Canadian, right? implies that I think that you are not Canadian, but I want you to verify that.

They are both yes or no questions, but they come from different angles.

June 2, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/ClaudiaMMB1

, That's also correct.

March 15, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/seaphilia

That's what I wrote too! It should also be correct.

November 22, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/AbaddonWan

你不是加拿大人吗? basically means “I thought you were a Canadian, how could I be wrong?” so it has the same meaning as 'you are a Canadian, right?'

November 23, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/stevevanjames

I see that the individual characters for 加拿大人 translate to "add gets heavy people" - are they calling Canadians fat? :p - or is it because it phonetically sounds similar? haha

December 23, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/Phill858962

Like most country name it is semi-phonetic, grabing a couple of characters to represent the sound. The key is in Cantonese 加 is pronounced something like ka, and most of the early Chinese speakers in Canada were specifically Cantonese speakers from GuangDong province.

May 3, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/ALLintolearning3

That explains it. The Korean also uses the "ka" sound.

Most characters mean totally different things when put together with other characters rather than by themselves.

June 2, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/Phill858962

It's interesting to look at all the readings in different dialects, plus how they were imported into other languages. As I understand it it's allowed linguists to get a very good idea of how Middle Chinese sounded.

June 2, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/Tony111ster

The 大 at the end is actually accurate taking into consideration the size of Canada

January 24, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/Gabrielle145359

Phonetics!

May 1, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/Tigerplus14

This doesn't make sense... I put, "You are not canadian.", and it said correct. But, here, it says the translation is "Arent you Canadian?", and those alternative translations are not similar... was I right?

November 25, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/evanpipta

I wrote "You are not Canadian?" and it was marked wrong, no idea why.

December 1, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/roman2095

Duo does not generally accept statements with question marks as questions (probably at least partially because Duo normally ignores punctuation) . You need to reverse the subject and verb to indicate a question (or use "do" when appropriate)

December 9, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/Karuna8063

I wrote the same and it was correct 12-9-17.

December 9, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/nao312626

Yes, accepted. "You are not Canadian?"

December 20, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/Fukurou_Sa

我是加拿大人。

December 24, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/susufrench

我不是加拿大人。

May 28, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/ASchaufele

Yeah yeah! Shout out too all my fellow Canadians out there!

December 27, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/RobinEsme1

Aren't you Canadian? is expecting the listener to affirm that yes, indeed he/she is canadian. I don't think this Chinese version is doing that at all? I think it translates as You aren't Canadian, are you? which is expecting the listener to deny that they are Canadian?

Aren't you Canadian? and You are Canadian aren't you? are not the same in English.

December 16, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/Gabrielle145359

I believe the Chinese sentence expects an affirmative, as "Aren't you Canadian?" does in English.

May 1, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/Ayatsuri

Doesn't "Aren't you Canadian" expect an answer more like "what? no, what made you think I was Canadian?"?

While "You are canadian, aren't you?" expects a more affirmative answer such as "yes, yes of course your are correct, so I am!"?

(Literal translation something like : You not are canada person, yes?)

August 27, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/Amikigisto

Why doesn't 加拿大 have 国 to denote a nation? Are there rules to help me know which countries use 国, and which countries don't?

January 12, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/Gabrielle145359

I can't say for sure, but based on my knowledge, only country names that are otherwise one chatacter get 国 on the end.

May 1, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/ALLintolearning3

This is "Canadian" not "Canada". My question would be why do some of them need the "nation" character for the person?

June 2, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/Ayatsuri

I'm pretty sure Gou is the sign for Kingdom/State/Republic, one could argue this to correlate to Canada being part of the Brittish common wealth while America has had imperialistic and exploitative tendencies inherited from their Brittish suppressors...

But when you think a bit further you may realize that the countroes that get assigned the Gou-sign also have that in their english name;

United KINGDOM United STATES of America Peoples REPUBLIC of China

So it has no degratory significance that they make some country names only phonetic.

When talking about nationality one must translate more literally for it to make perfect sense. I.e. a Canadian is a person pf Canada, there for in Chinese will be a "Canada person".

August 27, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/Mary442069

It is frustrating when the correct answer is given and the system returns an error but they all match up!!

June 11, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/ALLintolearning3

Did you have the multiple choice?

June 11, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/Mary442069

I had to choose the characters which I did and they matched exactly the answer given but I was told my response was incorrect

June 11, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/ALLintolearning3

I would take a screenshot and put that in a bug report through the help button below.

June 11, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/Mary442069

Thank you

June 12, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/Mauricio9k

I think a better translation could be "Are you not canadian?"

July 28, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/ALLintolearning3

Canadian must be capitalized in English. “Are you not” and “Aren’t you” mean the exact same thing, so one is not better than the other and both should be accepted as correct.

July 28, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/Mauricio9k

I'm from Argentina, I would respond to the questions: "Aren't you Canadian?" with a No, and "Are you not Canadian?" with a Yes. I think that's ok.

July 29, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/grace649

Why is "are you canadian?" Wrong?

November 19, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/codelimavictor

不 is negative, are you Canadian would be 你是加拿大人吗?

November 19, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/Sawyer5671

Yes, like @hanslandaaa said, 不 means "Wrong", or in some cases with the correct characters can mean, "Are not", "Isn't".

November 27, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/SzymonRuci

because there's a character "不" before "是". "你不是..." - "You are not...".

November 20, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/buenotc

There's a 'not' in the question.

November 26, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/Yoruji

Because there's a 不/not in the sentence

November 27, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/FrancescaS450444

Because of the不 in the sentence. The direct translation of "Are you Canadian?" would be "你是加拿大人吧? " :)

December 9, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/rtk337648

Only reason I could think of is because 不 is in there. I think it's right but for this course gotta use all the characters when translating

December 14, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/triojenna

Why is "Aren't you a Canadian person?" wrong? Since "人" means person, that answer should have been correct.

November 22, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/clnoy

You should just think of it as a nationality, since it's a compound word.

Country name + 人 = nationality.

December 4, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/MartinCleary

I'm seem to have missed the lesson where they taught 'Canada'....Was there one?

December 2, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/clnoy

In the previous lessons, where they taught you the characters for jiā, and .

  • 加拿大。 Canada

    jiānádà

December 4, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/Karuna8063

On my system there was no "previous lesson" and no lessons that taught what these words meant. We have to go through all those pages of matching characters with sounds but there is no way to find out what it all means. Its only when they start the sentences near the end of the lesson that you can hover over the characters and find out what they mean. Very frustrating and a slow way to learn.

December 9, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/ALLintolearning3

Just click on words you don't know for hints.

June 2, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/ph516503

Ahhh, makes sense now .. "add", "catch", "big" wasn't saying canada to me at all...so they've just taken 3 words which produce a similar sound and put them together to make somthing that's phonetically similar to "ca-na-da"... same as "ying" sounds a bit like "eng" in England?

June 21, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/roman2095

This is it I think, so you didn't miss it. It is in the hover hints.

December 9, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/IWannaLearn3

Jia-na-da

December 16, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/David01261659

most of my learning so far has been from talking and listening to people. That is a terribly bad pronunciation of "jianada"

December 22, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/Cristovao453263

你不是加拿大人吗? :-)

September 3, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/JonathanGr895247

Are you not Canadian

December 25, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/MayKay2

"Aren't you Canadian?", is not a negative sentence. It is closer to "arn't cha" slang meaning "You are Canadian, right?" A negative sentence would be "You are not Canadian, correct?"

Aren't is along the lines of other colloquialism words like ain't, yall, y'all, and all yall. Please, please, please remove Aren't from the English phrases as its HEAVILY reliant on verbal context and not taught as a conjunction in schools.

February 1, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/ALLintolearning3

aren’t = are not

It is definitely taught in American schools. It is not considered slang as some of the others that you mentioned.

It is not a conjunction. It is a contraction which is optional, but very commonly used.

February 2, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/David841210

I agree with BenMcMilla2's comment. The Chinese version is effectively saying - I think you are not Canadian, is this right? Whereas if you asked someone the question 'are you not Canadian' in English, you are basically implying that you thought the person WAS Canadian. Think the difference might seem subtle, and more so given the two are literally interchangeable.

April 5, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/ahalldenabberton

"加拿大" LOL! "No, I'm 安 二美日可呢."

November 22, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/Karuna8063

wish I knew what you wrote, it might be funny but I don't know enough Chinese yet to read it.

December 9, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/Gabrielle145359

That's a transliteration of "America" lol.

May 1, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/Gabrielle145359

America gets "美国" lol!

May 1, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/Ayatsuri

Ever considered how close it is phonetically to a spanish pronounciation of "Mexico"? ;) Me-ji-co vs. Me-i-go :3 hehe

August 27, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/LaohuLady

aren't you canadian does not match this phrasing. This is a positive statement where as the chinese is a negative.

November 17, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/AbunPang

“Aren’t you Canadian?” is the same as ”Are you not Canadian?” isn’t it?

November 17, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/khonkhortisan

Aren't you Canadian?/Are not you Canadian? is saying "I believe(d) you are Canadian. Will you tell me otherwise?"

November 20, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/ALLintolearning3

Same with the Chinese, waiting for a yes or no.

June 11, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/buenotc

Maybe we shouldn't use contractions to make things easier for non native English speakers

November 26, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/VoZktwfn

I agree. In addition, there are more and more English speakers that have a very low level.

September 29, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/Sawyer5671

Yes, that's what I wrote and I got it wrong, too. I feel like it should be right.

November 27, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/ALLintolearning3

Did you try reporting it?

June 11, 2018
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