1. juan_n_roses New Member

    España
    Español
    Hola, simplemente una pregunta: ¿Cómo dirías en inglés "puedes no hacerlo"? No en el sentido de you can't do it, sino, por poner un ejemplo: puedes no hacer los deberes si no quieres, pero entonces suspenderás.

    Espero sus respuestas, muchas gracias =)
     
  2. micafe

    micafe Senior Member

    United States
    Spanish - Colombia
    Usa "may" en vez de "can":

    "You may not do your homework if you don't want, but then you'll flunk".
     
  3. Cenzontle

    Cenzontle Senior Member

    English, U.S.
    Both "may" and "can" have potential ambiguity.
    "You may not..." becomes clear in the sentence about homework, and it grants permission not to do the homework.
    But "You may not..." also can mean "You don't have permission to..."
    To avoid these ambiguities, you almost have to abandon "can" and "may", and instead say something like
    "You have the option not to do your homework."
    Many English-speakers are unaware of the distinction between "cannot" (to be unable) and "can not" (to be able to avoid doing).
     
  4. juan_n_roses New Member

    España
    Español
    Ok! Thank you! / ¡gracias!
     
  5. Wandering JJ

    Wandering JJ Senior Member

    England
    British English
    I would say: 'You don't have to do your homework if you don't want, but then you'll fail'.
     
  6. Cenzontle

    Cenzontle Senior Member

    English, U.S.
    Wandering JJ's "don't have to" is more natural than "have the option", especially if you're talking to a young school child.
     

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