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わりに/くせに/ても/のに

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わりに/くせに/ても/のに

Postby DarumaBlue » Fri 04.09.2010 2:30 am

Once again, I have some questions distinguishing some pieces of Japanese grammar that are all connected in my head, but in a sort of mushy way. I'd like maybe a clearer distinction between

わりに/くせに/ても(or でも) and のに

To me these all have an implied meaning of "contrary to A, B" but that can't be right. So what are the different meanings between these?

Thanks in advance.
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Re: わりに/くせに/ても/のに

Postby writebook » Fri 04.09.2010 1:56 pm

A の わりに(は) B
is used when B is contrary to what the speaker expects from statement A.

Examples:
「ファストフードのわりにおいしい。」
It tastes good, considering that it's fast food.

「おまえ、人間のわりには強いな。」
You're strong, for a human.

「かれは、日本に行ったことがないわりには日本語がうまい。」
He is good at Japanese, despite never having gone to Japan. (or, to translate the feeling of the sentence: "His Japanese is better than what you would expect from someone who has never been to Japan." - this is just an example sentence, not everyone has to go to a country to speak the language of that country well!)

↑I've underlined the parts that might be considered a translation of the nuance of わりに。
Last edited by writebook on Fri 04.09.2010 3:37 pm, edited 4 times in total.
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Re: わりに/くせに/ても/のに

Postby writebook » Fri 04.09.2010 1:58 pm

A のくせに B
is used mostly for people. It is used to say something about a person with a negative feeling, in a derogatory or reproachful manner.

Examples:
「何も知らないくせに、人を判断するなよ」
Don't go judging people, despite not knowing anything (about the situation).
(reproachful towards the judgmental person)

「農民のくせに、武士にさからうのか?」
You dare oppose a samurai, despite being a (lowly) farmer?
(looking down on farmers)

「彼はバンパイアのくせに、血を見るのがこわかった。」
He was afraid of seeing blood, despite being a vampire.
(a vampire who is afraid of blood is laughable, not like a vampire)

「彼はお金持ちのくせに、けちだ。」
He was miserly, despite having lots of money.
(not like a rich person, in a bad way)

I've just realized that in the first two examples, the negative feeling comes from the first half of the sentence (the speaker's view or attitude towards people who don't know anything or the farmer caste) but in the last two example, the first part isn't necessarily negative (being a vampire or rich person), and the negativeness comes from not living up to what you would expect from the first part. So the negativeness might come either from just the first part, or from the sentence as a whole.
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Re: わりに/くせに/ても/のに

Postby writebook » Fri 04.09.2010 3:19 pm

So, わりに and くせに have something to do with the speaker's expectations or attitude.
ても and のに are much simpler. のに is like "Despite the fact that ..." and ても is like "Even if ...." They are more like simple contradictions and they don't reflect the speaker's evaluation or feelings towards something the way わりに and くせに do.

What separates のに and ても (as far as I can think of at this moment) is that the thing that comes before のに must be something that is already true. If it is something that is hypothetical (like a condition), you need to use ても。

For example,
彼は勉強したのに、英語の点数が悪かった。
Even though he studied, (his) English score was bad.
(Despite A being true (studied), B happened (English score was bad).)

文法だけ勉強しても、英語はうまくならない。
Even if (you) study just grammar, (you) won't get better at English.
(Even if you were to satisfy condition A (study grammar), result B follows (not get good at English).)

攻撃が直撃したのに…ダメージがない!
Even though the attack was a direct hit... there's no damage!
(Despite A being true, B happened.)

ふはははは!もう、あやまっても許してやらんぞ!
Mwahahaha! I won't forgive you anymore, even if you apologize!
(Even if you were to satisfy condition A (apologize), result B follows (be unforgiven).)

*When distinguishing these two, it might help if you can remember the origin of the word のに. I think the の in のに is the same as the の/ん that is used to nominalize a phrase (for example, make 財布を落しました into 財布を落としたです). It is the same の/ん that is used to "explain" your reality or your situation, and you can't talk about a situation in that "explanatory" tone unless it is already true (unless it is a question or something). However, while the part that comes before のに has to be true, that doesn't mean it always has to be in the past tense.

彼は来週、中国に行くのに、まだチケットを買っていない。
Even though he will go to China next week, he still hasn't bought his ticket.
(although he hasn't gone to China yet, the fact that he's intending to go there is already true at this moment.)
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Re: わりに/くせに/ても/のに

Postby writebook » Fri 04.09.2010 3:56 pm

Oops, the explanation I gave above might not be 100% correct.

If it follows something hypothetical, you should use ても。
If you want to "explain" a situation and then follow up with what happened despite that situation, you should use のに。
I think that much is correct.

However, I can think of some sentences where ても can be used for something that is true, not just hypothetical.
英語で話したのに、通じなかった。
Even though I spoke in English, (they) could not understand.

英語で話しても、通じなかった。
the nuance is like- "Speaking in English did not work."

Although I've written different translations to reflect the difference in nuance of the underlined parts, I need to think more about this to explain exactly what the difference is. If anyone else knows a more exact definition of the difference between ても and のに, it would be appreciated.
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Re: わりに/くせに/ても/のに

Postby tōkai devotee » Fri 04.09.2010 8:20 pm

It's a very difficult thing to explain. I think you've done quite well, writebook さん!
I've looked it up in A Dictionary of Basic Japanese Grammar and there's a rather long-winded explanation there but this is what it says...

のに

Contrary to everybody's expectation based on the sentence preceding noni, the proposition in the sentence following -noni is not the case.
examples:

毎日漢字を勉強しているのに良く覚えられません。
Although I'm studying Kanji everyday, I cannot memorize them well.

このステーキは高いのにおいしくない。
In spite of the fact that this steak is expensive, it isn't delicious.

Later it goes on to say that the speaker of -noni is personally involved with the propsition of sentence 1 and creates an emotive tone. This may be the subtle difference in nuance between -noni and -temo

ても

Temo is used when that which is expressed in the main clause is not what is expected from the content of the dependent (temo) clause.

examples:

雨が降っても行きます。
I'll go even if it rains.

寒くても出かけます。
I'll go out even if it's cold.


Does that make it clear, or just more confusing?! :?
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Re: わりに/くせに/ても/のに

Postby NocturnalOcean » Mon 04.12.2010 10:35 am

Here are some additional information I have from a Japanese grammar/work book I used at University in Japan.

XてもY : Xから当然予想されることと異なることがYにくる。
XのにY: Xから当然予想される結果がYに来ない。話しての意外感、不満を表す。

Colors in blue are correct, red are wrong.
1. A: 辛い料理食べられますか
B: ええ、辛[くても ・いのに] 平気です。 

2. 始まったばかりだと思って[いても ・いたのに] もう40分もたっていた。

3.  A: 食事もしないで働いているんですか。
B: ええ、おなかすいてませんから、食べ[なくても ・ないのに] 大丈夫です。

4. 機能会社の前を通ったら、休みの日[でも ・ なのに] 電気がついていた。

5. 急[いでも ・ ぐのに] 電車の時間に間に合わないだろう。

6. 大事なものなので、重[くても ・ いのに] 持っていきます。


XのにY のXとYは事実で、将来のことに用いない。Yに命令、意志、推量はこない。

7. 特殊な本だから、大きい本屋に行[っても ・ くのに] 見つからないだろう。

8. たくさんお金がもらえるはず[でも ・ だったのに] その仕事を引き受けなかった。

9. あなたも忙し[くても ・ いのに] 手伝ってくださるんですか。ありがとうございます。

10. 生活が苦し[くても ・ いのに] 目標を見失ってはいけない。


Hope these examples helped a bit:)
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Re: わりに/くせに/ても/のに

Postby writebook » Thu 04.15.2010 9:14 am

Thank you so much, Nocturnal Ocean. I'm interested in teaching Japanese, and these examples help me explain the difference between ても and のに to someone a little better.

1)のに can't be used for the future. It's used for something that happened.

2)のに has some emotional content. It shows that you really felt something should have happened in a certain way, but something else happened instead.

3)The result of のに can't be something that you did willfully, it has to be something that "happened to you".

(*However, your own feelings can be a surprise to yourself, and can be considered as "something that happened to you." So your own feelings and sensations can be Y clause (the result part of のに). For example,
「なぜだろう。彼女にふられたのに、あまり悲しくない。」(I don't know why, I just got dumped by my girlfriend, but I don't feel so sad.) or
「麻酔(ますい=anesthesia)をしたはずなのに痛い」 (I am supposed to have received anesthetics, but it still hurts.)
You just can't use your own willful decisions as Y.
However, it will have to be a very sadistic, nit-picking test-maker to make a question that requires you to use
のに for your own feelings that "happened to you.")

On the other hand, ても can be used for the future. It is used to explain how one thing does not lead to the other. It kind of feels like the opposite of ~ば、or ~と、which show that the first thing will lead to the second thing as a result.

However, there is still something I don't know how to explain....(cont.)
Last edited by writebook on Thu 04.15.2010 9:34 am, edited 4 times in total.
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Re: わりに/くせに/ても/のに

Postby writebook » Thu 04.15.2010 9:22 am

I still don't know how to explain the difference between のに in the past tense and ても・でも in the past tense.
助けを呼んだのに、誰も来なかった。
I called for help, but nobody came (even though I feel somebody should have come and helped me. That is how things should be).

助けを呼んでも、誰も来なかった。
Calling for help didn't work (the method used or action taken did not induce an expected result) and nobody came.

I totally understand the difference in feeling myself, but can't define it in a clear way.

It won't be necessary for passing proficiency tests (at least in tests fill-in-the-blank-with-the-correct-word-test, because both answers can be correct.) But in everyday communication, it could communicate a somewhat different feel about something that happened.
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Re: わりに/くせに/ても/のに

Postby Hyperworm » Thu 04.15.2010 1:40 pm

To me it seems fairly similar to:

Even though I called for help (~のに)
Even when I called for help (~でも)

With "even though"/~のに, there's a real expectation that someone should have come to help. People were around, and maybe even heard you, and being that they were your friends you would have expected someone to come, but no one did. Or, maybe you were trying to persuade someone walking away to help, and by putting it this way with のに you want to emphasize that helping was the expected thing they should have done. You called for help, and despite that, no one helped. You feel betrayed, disgusted, or confused as to how this could have happened.

With "even when"/~ても, calling for help was one of your attempts to get out of the situation, and it too failed. Maybe you were just trying out of desperation with no expectation at all, or perhaps you did think there was a good chance that someone might help... maybe you tried to persuade someone walking away to help... but regardless, your efforts are in vain and no one listens. Your best attempts fail, and you feel helpless. You are drawing attention to your own plight, describing your own situation with this sentence - rather than criticizing the failure of the environment to respond to you.

Hopefully that's accurate ._.
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Re: わりに/くせに/ても/のに

Postby writebook » Thu 04.15.2010 4:49 pm

That's great, Hyperworm!

"Even when" captures the sense I wanted to convey for "ても"!
Great translation.
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Re: わりに/くせに/ても/のに

Postby yangmuye » Mon 04.26.2010 5:18 am

Hi. As for ても, in Chinese we have a similar structure “A 也 B”. It seams not to imply "contrary A and B", but implies "an extreme case". I'm not sure if it's the same as ても in Japanese.

The nuance of "A B。" is like this:
"X B"。 just as expected
A is a more extreme situation than X, the result should change.
"A 也 B"。Even A is a more extreme situation than X, B sill will happen.

If B is word like "be bad", "will fail", it have a nuance like "No matter what you do, it will do work."
If B is word like "be good" "will success", it have a nuance like "Although it's not the best, but acceptable." or "A is not the only one that works".
We also use the structure to make polite request, it sounds like "(something is suitable) This request may be unduly. Will it still be acceptable? "

Is it the same as Japanese AてB ?
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Re: わりに/くせに/ても/のに

Postby Astral Abraxas » Mon 04.26.2010 7:56 pm

Maybe comparing these two sentences will help you understand:

勝たなくては意味が無い= not to win has no meaning.
勝っても意味が無いよ= even if you win there is no meaning.

lit: to win too has no meaning.

this example is to show where the form comes from. if you know that then maybe you'll know how to use it.
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Re: わりに/くせに/ても/のに

Postby writebook » Thu 04.29.2010 7:09 am

Judging from the examples you gave us, ても does seem the same as 也.
yangmuye wrote:The nuance of "A B。" is like this:
"X B"。 just as expected
A is a more extreme situation than X, the result should change.
"A 也 B"。Even A is a more extreme situation than X, B sill will happen.

5分前に予約しても大丈夫だった。(I made a reservation only 5 minutes in advance, but it was still ok.)

yangmuye wrote:If B is word like "be bad", "will fail", it have a nuance like "No matter what you do, it will do work."

逃げても無駄だ。 "Even if you run away, it's no use."
一生かけても読み切れない。 "I can't read all of it even if I spend my whole life."

yangmuye wrote:If B is word like "be good" "will success", it have a nuance like "Although it's not the best, but acceptable." or "A is not the only one that works".

「電話をしたほうがいいけれど、eメールでもいいよ。」
"It's better if (you) call (him/her), but an e-mail is acceptable"

yangmuye wrote:We also use the structure to make polite request, it sounds like "(something is suitable) This request may be unduly. Will it still be acceptable? "


Now that you mention it, asking for permission with ても such as
「トイレにいってもいいですか?」
does sounds slightly more polite than
「トイレにいっていいですか?」
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