not that

123xyz

Senior Member
Macedonian
Hello everybody,

Could someone tell me if the usage of "not that" is correct in this sentence, not so much grammatically as semantically:

After all, you wishing to study French automatically means that you’re interested in its literature and the associated culture as well, not that these fields are radically distinct from language study itself.

This is a sarcastic periphrasis of what someone said - the speaker wishes to sarcastically express indignity at the fact that many people assume that if you're learning a foreign language, you inevitably wish to explore its literature and culture as well. In the "not that" portion of the sentences, he wishes to say that literature and culture are radically distinct from language study, although the person whose speech is being paraphrases contended the opposite. Is this what I have conveyed through the way I've written the sentence? It sounds suspicious to me.

Thank you in advance
 
  • owlman5

    Senior Member
    English-US
    Is this what I have conveyed through the way I've written the sentence? It sounds suspicious to me.
    I sure can't detect any irony or sarcasm in that sentence. It tells me that literature and culture are closely related to language.
     

    123xyz

    Senior Member
    Macedonian
    Then I think that what I've written is fine. So, the sentence tells you that literature and culture are closely related to language (this was what I had doubts about), but sarcasm is about saying the opposite of what you mean. The sarcasm in this case will be conveyed by context and intonation. Thank you for the reply.
     

    boozer

    Senior Member
    Bulgarian
    After all, you wishing to study French automatically means that you’re interested in its literature and the associated culture as well, not that these fields are radically distinct from language study itself.
    The sentence tells me that your wishing to study French does not automatically mean that these fields (literature and culture) are radically different from language study itself... :confused:

    I suspect you want to use the second part of the sentence as a standalone sentence:
    Not that these fields are...
    In this way you would be saying that you believe they are not distinct.
     
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