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How is the volitional form used?

Jace *\(^o^)/*
Asked 5 years ago

I'm reading the usage of 落ち着ける, and have come across its use in the volitional form..

しばらくこの町に腰を落ち着けようと思う。

Without looking at the site translation(which I try to resist doing), I would say this means "I think I will stay in this town for a little while."

 

The English clause "will stay" is open to any number of meanings. Someone could be forcing you to stay against your will. There may be some unknown factor compelling you to remain put in this one place. Or you could just decide to stay here for merely personal reasons. We don't really give specification in English(at least, not very often), until more context is given to the scenario. Is the volitional form used here to provide such context? And if so, why is this specification given here, when in some passages it is omitted by using a "simpler" inflection?

 

I'm using this specific piece of dialoge for no particular reason. I feel that as the Kanji become more naturaly to me, the greatest barrier between being able to read Nihongo, and being able to truly UNDERSTAND it, will be my grasp of all the various inflections. There's nothing like it in English, as we have a very non-inflective language. That means every line we write is implicity devoid of context until more is given through supplemental dialogue. I get the feeling that there can be a ton of context given just in the inflections chosen. Is this a fair assumption, and how can I practice this in my own writing? Thanks in advance for your insight!

 

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1 Answer

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Jaceさん、

I'm not sure if I understood your question perfectly;;  But I can clarify this point, at least.  When you say,
しばらくこの町に腰を落ち着けようと思う。

we naturally think that  "you just decide to stay here for merely personal reasons."  It doesn't sound like "Someone is forcing you to stay against your will."

As you may know, the volitional form is used when your will is expressed.  So, in this case, this sentence specifies the context and doesn't provide any other interpretations, I would say.  Hope this helps! 

Masako
Answered 5 years ago