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Question ロシアの文学を勉強したことがあるの?

Zizka

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"Have you studied Russian literature?"
If I wrote that sentence this way:
ロシアの文学をべんきょうしましたか
Would it have the same meaning?
 

Toritoribe

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Close but not the same. Your sentence doesn't always have the meaning of "has ever experienced", which the title sentence has.
 

Zizka

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「ロシアの文学を勉強したことがあるの?」
I looked in my dictionary for the entry ある so I could better understand the difference:
Something has been done to something and the resultant state of that action remain.

When it comes to the structure however, it says the 〜て form is used:
それはもうションに話してある.
In the sentence, it’s not using the 〜て form, why is that?
 

Toritoribe

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Simply because "-te form + ある" and "past form + ことがある" are completely different expressions from each other. You just refer to an unrelated explanation. (Incidentally, another different expression "non-past form + ことがある" also exists.)
 

Zizka

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Ah yes, I just spotted the right explanation in my dictionary: there was a time when...
「ロシアの文学を勉強したことがあるの?」
Ok so you if the verb is in the past and followed by ことがある/あります it means someone has done something. So: Have you studied Russian literature then. Got it.
 

Buntaro

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it means someone has done something.


I am afraid you are over-simplifying the use of the present perfect term "have done something". Present perfect has more than one meaning in English. For example, we can ask, "Have you been to the store?" which does not mean, "Have you ever been to the store?" and does not use ...したことがある in the corresponding
Japanese question. The Japanese language has corresponding structures for each of the different meanings of English's present perfect.

Well, let me edit my previous statement. "Have you been to the store?" can mean, "Have you ever been to the store?" but it can also have another, different meaning, and each of these two meanings are translated into Japanese differently.
 
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Zizka

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Well, let me edit my previous statement. "Have you been to the store?" can mean, "Have you ever been to the store?" but it can also have another, different meaning, and each of these two meanings are translated into Japanese differently.

I understand from your message that the functions of the present perfect have different Japanese expressions which is logical. The present perfect can be focused on the experience (have you or haven’t you do something) and what was the other meaning you had in mind and its corresponding expression?
 

Buntaro

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…what was the other meaning you had in mind and its corresponding expression?


For the purpose of teaching present perfect to Japanese (and Chinese) students, I divide present perfect into five different meanings.

1.
Have you ever…? (This the meaning that Japanese students are most familiar with. It is common for Japanese students to mistakenly think this is the only meaning for present perfect.)

2.
Key words (in red) which indicate the use of present perfect:

Have already done something
Have not done something yet
Haven’t done something since (a point of time in the past)
Have done something recently
Have just done something
Have done --- so far
Have done --- up to now

3.
Use of present perfect with a period of time
Have done something for ten years
Have been doing something for ten years

4.
State of being
The rain has stopped.

5.
The Second Idea (which is usually a strong emotional reaction to something that has happened)
(Mom to her young son) Did you wash your hands? vs. Have you washed your hands??!!

~~~

Please note that ...したことがある is only used for meaning #1.

~~~

In addition, the Japanese phrase …chau ( = …te shimau), which is an equivalent to one English usage of present perfect, has a special meaning in Japanese. The meaning is that something has happened, and that something is gone forever.

Miruku o nonde shimatta! = He drank all of the milk, and the milk is now all gone.

Yutchatta! = She said it, she can never take it back, her bad words will last forever.
 
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Zizka

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I might have misunderstood but #2 seems to be something I would’ve imagined to be an aspect of other categories as opposed to being a grammatical function on its own.

Also your last sentence is in the simple past, not the present perfect. Do you mean that in that case present perfect and simple past is interchangeable?

Miruku o nonde shimatta! = He drank all of the milk, and the milk is now all gone.
 

Zizka

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To better explain what I mean, I’ll quote a few sentences from A Dictionary of Basic Japanese Grammar.

私はヨーロッパへ行ったことがある
I have been to Europe.

レタスがとても高かったことがあります
Lettuce has been expensive (there was a time when it was expensive)

Based on what you’ve written I would say they both fit in the first category. According to the dictionary, ことがある is used to talk about a person’s experience which is what I’m more or less taking away from it.
 
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