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Hi,
would you notice the difference between the answers in this conversation?

- Can I move my home path to another partition without formatting?
- I think you can. / I think you can't.


I can distinguish between can and can't when can is not stressed (so it's "kun"), but I think there's no way to distinguish them when they are both stressed. I still remember when Ann Cook, in American Accent Training, said: "Now we are going to learn the difference between CAN and CAN." LOL
My tendency is to release the T a little when I want to avoid being ambiguous, so:
I think you can't. - slight t at the end.
No, you can't. - Unreleased t, glottal stop, call it what you want.
You can't see it. - My tongue doesn't even try to do any kind of T

What's your opinion? Thank you in advance Emotion: smile
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Comments  
For me, "can" is usually /[email protected]/ when unstressed, and "can't" is /k{nt?/ (unreleased /t/) or /k{O~?/ (no /n/ and a nasalized vowel).

In "I think you can. / I think you can't" the "can" is stressed so it is /k{n/, and it could be confused for "can't."
AlienvoordIn "I think you can. / I think you can't" the "can" is stressed so it is /k{n/, and it could be confused for "can't."
Yeah, that's what I was referring to. I know the difference when "can" is not stressed, but the problem should be considered when "can" is stressed, making it sound practically the same as "can't".
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It's a problem a lot of native speakers have. Emotion: smile
This is a particularly rough one!

can has just an n (of course), but it's a full n. can't has an n that is terminated abruptly by an unreleased t (and it may even include a glottal stop for some speakers) which gives the impression of the beginning of a t (but not the end). Even the a seems shorter in can't than in can.

Releasing the t to avoid ambiguity is fine, but that's unnecessary if you cut off the njust right. (Easier said than done, right? Emotion: smile)

don't and won't have the same termination, but there's no chance of ambiguity there (no word don or won with nearly the same pronunciation).

CJ

P.S. In can't see it, you should have your Italian zz (English ts). I canzzi it (where zzi is Italian!). But between n and s a sycophantic t will almost automatically appear anyway, just because of how the articulatory organs have to move to produce that transition.

P.S. The example you use in the set-up could be better. We'd more likely say these (raising the negation into the main clause):

I think you can. I don't think you can.

But no matter -- I get your point. Emotion: smile

Well, yeah, maybe in "can" the final sound is a full "n" sound, and in "can't" the "n" might seem cut, stopped, or shorter. I don't know, maybe it's just me, but I think that difference is so small that maybe it only exists in theory. When people talk fast or in a lazy way (which happens most of the time in conversations), heh, you are not going to hear that very small difference anyway!
I think most of ambuguities in the case of "can vs can't" are overcome because the context, and not because we actually hear the difference between "can" and "cant".
That's why we usually say "No, you can't" or (as you said) "I don't think you can" instead of just "You can't".

Thanks Emotion: smile
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Tip for struggling students (before you throw in the towel Emotion: smile).

There is a very simple way of avoiding any possible confusion between 'can' and 'can't':

just pronounce them [] and [], respectively.
Well, Kooyeen, here's how I pronounce them. I recorded what you wrote in your post. And, you'll also be able to see if you can understand my accent. Emotion: smile

Here's the link:
http://ax6.org/freeupload/c1.wav
So, am I comprehensible?
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