Contradiction? Yes and no.

Does the sentence below make sense?

He couldn’t help himself, so he helped himself.

5 Responses to “Contradiction? Yes and no.”

  1. “He couldn’t stop himself, so he served himself with food”. (?)
    (But where would you put the nucleus in each clause?)

  2. JWL says:

    To quote from my article on Accentuation §8.1.12(a) in the ‘Home Page’ of my website http://www.yek.me.uk
    It’s possible for a word to be accented twice in a sentence because of semantic re-focusing eg because a contrast of meaning is involved when the word re-occurs in a different sense. This has been called ‘anta`naclasis’
    Various examples are given there.
    Tonetic transcription:
    He `couldn’t `stop himˏself, | so he served him`self with food

  3. Emilio Márquez says:

    Thanks for those helpful insights, Jack. Your Home Page is a must.

  4. JWL says:

    Hi Emilio
    Many thanks for those kind words about my Home Page
    Incident.ly your Home Town Córdoba is my fav.rit Spanish city
    Cheers
    Jack

  5. Jack,
    I can’t think of a greater honour than being liked by the best people. –Let me know whenever you’re visiting us and I’ll take you to the “worst” places ;)

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