The Japanese progressive


#1

Title says it. We’ve already discussed the basics in this other thread but let’s continue here.

We left off with progressive plus ない. What is the difference between 「宿題をしなかった」 and 「宿題をしていない」?


Short Grammar Questions
#2

Again, hunch: していない implies that you still have a chance to finish up homework. しなかった is just that you didn’t do your homework.


#3

That’s surprisingly simple O.o
Is it the same for all kinds of verbs?


#4

I would also like to know the answer to this.


#5

I very much doubt it - it would depend on the verb/activity and the context.


#6

Progressive…
For all I remember, it’s like this -

  1. Affirmative non-past
    a. 食べる - [to eat (habitual action, done repeatedly over time)]
    b. 食べている - [to be eating (continuous action, done constantly over time)] OR [to eat (habitual action, done repeatedly over time)]

  2. Negative non-past
    a. 食べない - [to not eat (negation of habitual action that is done repeatedly over time)]
    b. 食べていない - [to not be eating (negation of continuous action done constantly over time) OR to not eat (negation of habitual action that is done repeatedly over time)]

  3. Affirmative past
    a. 食べた - [ate (completed action, specific instance done once in the past)]
    b. 食べていた - [was eating (completed action, specific instance done once in the past, emphasis on being done over time) OR have eaten (completed action, unspecified, potentially multiple instances, emphasis on the state of having already eaten)]

  4. Negative past
    a. 食べなかった - [didn’t eat (negation of completed action that is a specific instance done once in the past)]
    b. 食べていなかった [was not eating (negation of completed action that is a specific instance done once in the past, emphasized to be done over time) OR have no eaten (being in the state of having not yet eaten)]

I mean, this is how I remember it from memory. It’s for sure more complicated that that, but these guiding lines have helped me in the past. If anyone knows a better way to put it, I would like to know as well.

I’ve used 食べる as an example because it’s a generic transitive verb that shouldn’t pose much trouble.
Most other verbs should work in similar manners, though some verbs are rarely used in certain forms due to connotations

知らない as far as I remember, makes the speaker seem ignorant or uncaring about the bit of knowledge, versus 知っていない which generally reflects a lack of knowledge without any peculiar nuance.

分かっている - I think with this one it is reflected that the speaker already knows and understands information given to him by the other party, which might seem a bit rude.

And of course いる and ある that by themselves are never in progressive forms.