HomeQ&Awhy do they use subjunctive in this sentence?

why do they use subjunctive in this sentence?

2
votes

hey i was watching arnold schwarzennegers movie "colateral damage" and i was watching it with subtitles, and one time the guy said "NO ME DIGAS QUE HACER"

the subtitle said "dont tell me what to do" but i dont understand why he used subjunctive DIGAS, instead of DICE. i know what subjuntive is and i know how to use it, but to me it just seems like they use it TOO much. why do they say "NO HAGAS ESO"?? insted of no hace eso?

also, why do they use "Usted" so much when they're only talking to someone that should NOT be formal, tu (with an accent mark about the u)? like a husband to a wife, or vise versa?

gracias

2971 views
updated MAR 4, 2010
posted by israelyplane
Welcome to the forum! Great question! - mountaingirl123, MAR 3, 2010

3 Answers

3
votes

"NO ME DIGAS QUE HACER"

the subtitle said "dont tell me what to do" but i dont understand why he used subjunctive DIGAS, instead of DICE

The subjunctive is used with negative commands

• Don't tell me - no me digas (negative command)

• Tell me - Dime (positive command)

updated MAR 3, 2010
posted by Izanoni1
ok.. but why do they say digaS, instead of digA? i mean, if its a command, it has to be in third person, so why digas? shouldnt it be 'no me DIGA'? - israelyplane, MAR 3, 2010
Whoa. Good question... Israelyplane, I suggest you post this below, so it is clear you still have a question. :-) - chaparrito, MAR 3, 2010
Tú commands use 3rd person singular for affirmative, and the tú form of present subjunctive in the negative. A negative command in third person is an Ud. command. - Luciente, MAR 3, 2010
2
votes

Trust the other answers in regards to the commands.

To answer your second question, it depends on the culture. For example, there are some places where children will use "tú" with their parents. People in other cultures may address all adults with "Ud."

Hope this helps.

updated MAR 4, 2010
edited by MReplogle
posted by MReplogle
Muy bien. :-) - chaparrito, MAR 3, 2010
Also the guys that write subtitles are not linguistic scholars. Watch for spelling errors. - 0074b507, MAR 4, 2010
2
votes

In this case hagas is not subjunctive; it's the negative command form. "Haz"--do it; "no hagas"--don't do it. Hagas and digas are also the present subjunctive tú forms.

updated MAR 3, 2010
posted by tennismom
¡Perfecta! :-) - chaparrito, MAR 3, 2010
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