> (hello... i just found this today.)
> > “fail to do sth”: according to COD, it means “try to do without success”,
> > “be unable to do”. My impression is, however, that it is often used in the
> > simple meaning “don't do” with no connontaion of an unability. Is this correct?
> i agree with the dictionary-def and not you impression, but maybe often
> it's used casually in an arrogant (condescending) way.... the writer says
> something like [Students fail to realize....] and the writer is
> (metaphorically) shaking his head.
That is, in addition to “try to do without success” and “be unable to do” the
meaning is sometimes “should do but don't do”.
> what's the particular example here?
The question is which voiceless plosives are – or should be – aspirated in
Swahili. The context is:
As a matter of fact, there appears to be a general tendency to connect
aspiration with stress and with initial position, e.g. [...]
The blurring of the contrast between aspirate and non-aspirate is
consequently probably ascribable to the following causes:
(d) the growing influence of the numerous non-native speakers who fail to
establish a difference on which no stress is laid in Swahili language
education in any case.
(Edgar Polomé: Swahili Language Handbook. Center for Applied Linguistics,
Washington, 1967, p. 41)