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A: So, no party tonight?

B: No, there is a lot of discussion.

Is B saying there is no party?

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  • 1
    It's somewhat ambiguous, but most likely it means no party.
    – Hot Licks
    Commented Nov 22, 2020 at 21:24
  • I infer the discussion about the party is still going on, so it hasn't been called yet. Commented Dec 22, 2020 at 22:12
  • "Yes, we have no bananas."
    – GEdgar
    Commented Dec 22, 2020 at 22:40

1 Answer 1

-1

You are correct. B is affirming that there is no, or will be no party.

The additional information about the discussion implies that it was about the party and whether or not to have it. You can speculate on the nature of the discussion but the outcome is no party. Perhaps another time.

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    Note, however, that the sentence says 'there is a lot of discussion', not that there was or has been a lot of discussion. This implies that the discussion is still going on, which in turn implies that it is not yet settled whether the party will take place. On that reading the no at the beginning of the sentence means only that A is wrong in believing that it is settled that there will be no party tonight.
    – jsw29
    Commented Dec 22, 2020 at 23:37
  • @jsw29; Nice point but in such discussions no generally means No. A secondary statement about discussions still taking place is typical added just to make people feel better. I have actually been there; waiting till 4:00 AM to bring over the beer. No luck.
    – Elliot
    Commented Dec 23, 2020 at 2:29

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