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Using "de" instead of "de la"

JoanneB2Kwiziq community member

Using "de" instead of "de la"

In the last sentence, the speaker says he can't eat salad without bread and "salad" is expressed as "de salade." Shouldn't it be "de la salade?"

Asked 6 months ago
CélineKwiziq team memberCorrect answer

Bonjour Joanne,

Alan's comment is correct! The sentence referred to here is in the negative form:

Partitive articles (du / de la etc) change to 'de' in a negative sentence  

Je ne peux pas manger de salade -> negation / de + noun

Je peux manger de la salade -> no negation / de la + feminine noun

Follow link here: the-partitive-article-in-negative-sentences

I hope this is helpful.

Bonne journée !

ChrisC1 Kwiziq Q&A super contributor

It is not a specific salad he can't eat, it is salad in general. In this case, no definite article.

AlanC1 Kwiziq Q&A super contributor

I suppose the question is whether the partitive article "de la" should change to "de" in a negative sentence. I'm not sure exactly what the text is in the dictation, but I expect it will be similar to the examples given in this thread, where both sentences are correct.

Je n'aime pas manger de salade.

Je n'aime pas manger de la salade. 

https://forum.wordreference.com/threads/fr-ne-pas-aimer-manger-boire-de-article-partitif-du-de-la-des-d%C3%A9fini-le-la-les.679904/

AlanC1 Kwiziq Q&A super contributor

Hi Céline,

Do you agree that changing the partitive article to "de" is optional in this case, since it is pouvoir that is being negated, rather than manger?

I see that the Académie Française says it depends on usage, but they don't say what happens with pouvoir.

https://www.academie-francaise.fr/questions-de-langue#64_strong-em-partitif-et-dterminant-em-strong

...

Cependant, lorsqu’un verbe à l’infinitif est le complément de verbes ou de locutions verbales, c’est généralement l’usage qui décide du maintien de l’article en tournure négative. Ainsi, on dira plutôt avec l’article : "Il n’aime pas faire du ski" ; "Il n’a pas envie de manger de la choucroute". Mais on pourra dire indifféremment, avec ou sans article : "Elle ne souhaite pas manger de choucroute" ou "Elle ne souhaite pas manger de la choucroute" ; "Elle ne veut pas avoir de chien" ou "Elle ne veut pas avoir un chien", etc.

CélineKwiziq team member

Bonjour Alan,

You can use the partitive article in a negative sentence only if there is an opposition that is more or less made clear:

clear opposition: Je ne bois pas du vin, mais de la bière = I don’t drink wine, but beer

no opposition: Je ne bois pas de vin = I don’t drink wine   

underlying opposition: Je ne bois pas du vin tous les jours I don’t drink wine everyday  (I drink something else too)

After an infinitive (which, in this case, is the object of the main verb), you can use the partitive article as well as 'de' on its own, when it is about food:

Il ne peux pas manger de la salade = He can’t eat salad
what you are saying is: ‘il ne peux pas manger quoi?’(he can’t eat what?)                                          → answer: de la salade

Il ne peux pas manger de salade He can’t eat salad
what you are saying is: ‘il ne peux pas quoi?’ (he can’t what?)                                                        → answer: manger de salade

 I hope this clarifies your query.

Bonne journée !

Using "de" instead of "de la"

In the last sentence, the speaker says he can't eat salad without bread and "salad" is expressed as "de salade." Shouldn't it be "de la salade?"

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