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Does the second one make the same sense as the first one?

She is afraid of making grammatical mistakes, and that's why she doesn't speak French.
She doesn't speak French out of fear of making grammatical mistakes.
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Comments  
Yes.
Considering the scope of negation, isn't a comma necessary in front of 'out of fear...'?
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I think I see what you mean, but no. The case is similar to one with "because". Her fear is the whole reason for her silence.
Let me ask.

These are different in meaning, right?

She doesn't love him because he is rich.
She doesn't love him, because he is rich.
They can be. As they stand, I'd say they are the same, and that the comma is unnecessary. The listener hears "She doesn't love him" in both cases, and that is the important idea, especially for him. I suppose she is a devout communist.

But look at "She doesn't love him because he is rich, she loves him because he can spin a basketball." That sort of meaning does not automatically emerge from the version without a comma (She doesn't love him because he is rich.) simply by virtue of the missing comma because the first clause takes precedence semantically. Of course, in speech it's a little different. You can inflect your voice and trail off to get the meaning you want: "She doesn't love him because he is rich ...."
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enoon"She doesn't love him because he is rich, she loves him because he can spin a basketball." That sort of meaning does not automatically emerge from the version without a comma
Not automatically, for that one. Right.

But what about this?

He didn't shoplifted out of a whim.
That is a bit askew. It would be better as "He didn't shoplift on a whim." It means that he shoplifted deliberately—he planned it. The alternative interpretation, that he took it into his head one day to not shoplift, is so absurd that it doesn't occur to the reader. Still, the sentence seems a bit cryptic and skimpy. It would be better to express that thought using more words.
Oops. It should have been 'shoplift'. I forgot to delete 'ed' before posting it. Sorry.
enoon The alternative interpretation, that he took it into his head one day to not shoplift, is so absurd that it doesn't occur to the reader.
OK. So when you think it's ambiguous, it's because either interpretation is possible in reality.

I think you took 'She doesn't speak French out of fear of making grammatical mistakes' as:

She doesn't speak French, because of fear of making grammatical mistakes.
Because of fear of making grammatical mistakes, she doesn't speak French.

because speaking French out of fear of making grammatical mistakes doesn't make sense in reality.

Good.

Thanks, enoon.

(By the way, I've been waiting for your confirmation here)

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