Grammar detail: いけない, ならない etc

いけない, ならない etc - various ways to express obligation
126 words
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The idea of 'must do' (or must not do) can be expressed in Japanese in various ways.
Two of the most common are:
Both forms are roughly equivalent. A slight nuance is that the first form implies you think there is no other choice, whereas the second form implies that you have been told to do something, or it is otherwise a burden to you. In both of these cases, the initial form, なくては (the negative te form, which can be translated roughly as 'not doing'), can be strengthened to なければ (which means 'if I don't do').
Other ways to express obligation include:
To express a negative obligation (must not do), use the て form instead of the なくて form, for example:
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