4

I was praised by my tutor for the progress I'd made myself thus far, but somehow the message just seemed to carry a strange negative connotation to me. Here's the part where I found a tad off:

今年二月から勉強して、それだけの長文を書けるのはすごいことだとおもいます。

This is part of his reply after I reached out to him for an offer to be my tutor in conversation yesterday. I am fairly certain he wasn't being sarcastic or anything. There was absolutely no need to.

The reason why I find the message ostensibly negative is that I usually associate だけ with a sense of negative exclusiveness. Therefore, "これだけの長文" just reads like, "an article only so long in length" to me.

Am I being influenced by my understanding of だけ, especially how it usually translates to "only" in English? If not, is there a better way to rephrase this to avoid any confusion?

For example:

こんな程度の長文を書けるのはすごい…

Is this somewhat better than using だけ?

ご教授をいただければ、ありがたく思います。よろしくお願いいたします。

  • 1
    FWIW: some examples of grammar points using だけ in a positive way: だけあって・だけに・ だけのことはある – Nicolas Louis Guillemot Sep 19 '18 at 5:45
2

だけ is not necessarily negative, and this それだけ just means "that much" (or "that good" in this context).

Here are some related questions where だけ is not used in negative ways:

Contrary to your expectation, こんな程度/この程度 is usually used in negative or sarcastic remarks. (e.g., この程度の文章ではダメだ)

  • Just realized the question was yet another duplicate. I cannot believe I didn't find the posts you linked to. I think I've even read some of them before. – Yeti Ape Sep 19 '18 at 6:01

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.