Atusmi Kaneta
I want to go and I won't go Native speakers don't mishear "I want to go" and "I won't go"?
Nov 20, 2014 12:35 PM
Answers · 10
Hello. It is true that the sounds are somewhat similar. They might confuse us, so we must take take great care with the words WANT and WON'T. Won't is a contraction. Their usage can be very distracting. That is why it can be a great benefit to students of English, to use the expanded form, WILL NOT (GO) instead of "won't". WANT, employs the rarely taught SCHWA sound. The diacritical mark which shows this sound in a dictionary is an upside down letter "e". The sound it makes is "uh" and the same sound appears in words like BUT, HUT, LUCK, DUCK, etc. Thus, if one uses phrasing like, "I WILL NOT GO." all confusions with WANT can be eliminated. .
November 20, 2014
We never mishear these phrases. Here's why: "Want" is always a short vowel. "Won't" is always a dipthong (ie. 2 vowels together). There is absolutely no mistaking these. The learner mistake is thinking that "won't" is not a dipthong.
November 20, 2014
'Won't' is pronounced /wəʊnt/ in British English and /woʊnt/ in American English, while 'want to' is pronounced /wɑːntə/ in British English and /wɔːntə/ in American English. These differences in vowel sounds are clear to the native speaker's ear, and are never a source of misunderstanding. Only non-natives would 'mishear' these sounds. NB The 't' sound is very pronounced very lightly in all cases. You may not hear the 't' at all, and it may often disappear entirely.
November 20, 2014
No, we don't. Whatever the accent of the native speaker might be, we can always distinguish between the two phrases. The only time we might misunderstand the speaker's intention is when a non-native English user is speaking.
November 20, 2014
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Atusmi Kaneta
Language Skills
English, Japanese
Learning Language
English