Alicia Keys – If I Ain’t Got You
In this paragraph I am going to use the word ain’t. Ain’t is considered to be non-standard English, but since it shows up in a lot of pop songs and English movies, I thought for today’s lesson, I would show you what it means and how it’s used. If you ain’t heard of this word, I can understand it because is ain’t a usual word that you will see in a typical English lesson. But as many of my readers know, Happy English ain’t a typical English lesson and I ain’t got no plans to make it one! Ain’t was widely used in the 18th century, and these days it can be found in informal English conversations. Many people feel that it is not a valid English word, despite how much it is used.
The word ain’t is a contraction of am not, are not, and is not. Ain’t is for every subject. Thus, you can say:
- I ain’t interested in football.
- We ain’t interested in football.
- He ain’t interested in football.
It’s also possible to use ain’t in a yes/no question
- Ain’t we going to the beach today?
- Ain’t he supposed to be wearing a seatbelt?
- You like my new idea? Ain’t I so smart?!
We also use ain’t got, which means don’t have.
- I ain’t got enough money to buy a new car.
- Jack said he ain’t got enough time to finish the project this week.
- I opened the fridge, and we ain’t got anthing to eat. I’m going shopping.
So, these are all the ways you should not use ain’t. Like some other kinds of slang, I think this is good to know, but not necessarily good to use…
If you know anyone who has trouble with this English language point, why not help them out! Just share this lesson with them. Thanks for studying today!