Agreement and disagreement
The simplest way to express agreement with the statement is, eg:
Yes, it is/ does/ can, etc; Yes, he is/ does/ can, etc; Yes, they are/ do/ can, etc;
eg - Their flat is very comfortable.
- Yes, it is (, isn’t it?).
To agree with the negative statement, we repeat the negative, eg:
- These sandwiches don’t look very fresh.
- No, they don’t (, do they?).
Other ways to express agreement are:
I (quite) agree with you.
I think so too.
So do I. - in response to the sentences like I think/ believe, etc.
You are quite right.
Exactly. - formal
Quite so. - formal
I couldn’t agree more. - emphatic
I should say so. - emphatic
That’s just what I think. -emphatic
You can say that again. - emph., colloquial
So it is/ I have/ he did, etc. - surprised agreement
eg: a. - It’s half past eleven.
- So it is. I didn’t realize it was so late.
b. - You have a dirty spot on your dress.
- So I have. Where could I get it?
I suppose so. - reluctant or half- hearted agreement
I suppose it is/ he does/ we shall, etc. - rel. or h/h agr.
Eg - We shall have to start all over again.
- ( Yes, ) I suppose we shall.
Partial agreement may be expressed by the following phrases:
I agree with you up to a point/ in a sense/ in a way (but...)
I see what you mean, but...
That may be true, but...
eg - Convenience foods like frozen vegetables or packet soups save a lot of time.
- That may be true but on the other hand they have less nutritional value than fresh food.
( Oh) yes, but...
eg - Margaret is so charming.
- Yes, but to people she thinks are important.
The simplest way of expressing disagreement is:
( No,) it isn’t/ doesn’t/ can’t ,etc.
( No,) he doesn’t/ isn’t/ can’t etc.
( No,) they aren’t/ don’t/ can’t etc.
Eg - The museums are closed today.
- No, they aren’t.
To disagree with the negative statement we use the affirmative:
( Yes,) it is/ does/ can, etc
( Yes,) he does/ can/is, etc
( Yes,) they are/can/were etc
Eg - This book hasn’t been translated into Russian.
- ( Yes,) it has.
The above forms are used mainly to disagree with statement of facts. To disagree with an opinion, one of the following phrases are preferred:
I don’t agree (with you) (there)
I’m afraid I can’t agree (with you) (there)
I’m afraid/ I think you are mistaken.
Not at all. - direct, sometimes abrupt.
Nothing of the kind. -//-
On the contrary.- formal, -//-
Nonsense. - very abrupt, possibly rude
Here are some ways of softening disagreement:
As a matter of fact,...
eg - The Beatles are wonderful, aren’t they?
- Well, personally, I’m not very keen on them.
To disagree tactfully we may use such expressions as:
Oh, I don’t know.
Eg - This book is too difficult for children.
- Oh, I don’t know.
I wouldn’t say that.
Do you really think so?
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