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I often use the modal 'ja' as a way to suggest to the other that there is an agreement between us on the topic I'm talking about, or on a premise to a conclusion I'm drawing. The emotional quality of the 'ja' is defined by exactly what that topic/conclusion is. It always introduces a degree of emotion or at least subjectivity into a sentence otherwise ...


"ja" is normally a positive reaction to a question as "yes". But in German "ja" has a lot of other uses, not possible with English yes. Examples: Das ist ja nicht wahr!- Das ist ja gelogen! - Das ist ja falsch! Formerly such words were called Füllwörter, filling words, but that's rather a stopgap, it doesn't help a learner in any way. Today one uses terms ...

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