1

weiß überhaupt nicht

(There was no Ich in the original text, I assume because it is a continuation of a sentence which initially starts with “Ich weiß nicht”).

Is there an object in this sentence? Does überhaupt function as an object? If not, can you please tell me what is the grammatical function of überhaupt in this sentence?

The complete sentence is:

Ich weiß nicht Ihre damals gewöhnliche Redensart, etwas Verdrängtes anzuerkennen., weiß überhaupt nicht, wie die Mama in den Traum kommt;

  • 1
    Welcome to German Language SE. Can you please clarify what you know and understood about the word überhaupt such that we know where to begin explaining? – Wrzlprmft Jul 30 '16 at 8:57
  • Thank you, I don't read German as such, but it is an extract from the following sentence in one of Freud's articles - Thank you, it is in fact from a text by Freud, and the complete sentence is - Ich weiß nicht Ihre damals gewöhnliche Redensart, etwas Verdrängtes anzuerkennen., weiß überhaupt nicht, wie die Mama in den Traum kommt; – Igarath Jul 30 '16 at 11:49
  • Please edit that into your question. I wasn’t asking for context however, but your knowledge about the word überhaupt, e.g., do you know what it means and how it is typically used? – Wrzlprmft Jul 30 '16 at 12:27
  • I don't know much... I am not a German speaker unfortunately. I try to read the text, to understand a specific grammar issue relating to an analysis of the text I am working on, mostly with the English version. – Igarath Jul 30 '16 at 18:17
4

I'm pretty sure your citation is wrong - Can you check again? My version of Freud's text has "ihre damals gewöhnlichen Redensart, etwas Verdrängtes anzuerkennen" as a footnote - So it is not part of the direct speech. I had to look this up first because it left me puzzled.

Your text really says

»Ich weiß nicht Ihre damals gewöhnliche Redensart, etwas Verdrängtes anzuerkennen., weiß überhaupt nicht, wie die Mama in den Traum kommt; sie war doch damals nicht mit in L.«

So somehow the typesetting seems to be messed up there (can be seen by the full stop, comma sequence at "anzuerkennen" as well). My text says

"Ich weiß nicht (*), weiß überhaupt nicht, wie die Mama in den Traum kommt."

(*) Ihre damals gewöhnliche Redensart, etwas Verdrängtes anzuerkennen.

this makes a lot more sense to me.

Dora's direct speech literally translates to

"I don't know, don't know at all how mom got into this dream."

So the repetition "don't know at all" stresses and intensifies the "I don't know" of the first part. Überhaupt means "at all" in this as in most contexts.

|improve this answer|||||
  • I was using the following text -psychanalyse.lu/Freud/FreudDora.pdf – Igarath Jul 31 '16 at 7:04
  • @Igarath No wonder you got problems translating it. The direct speech of Dora in that text is garbled up with Freud*s footnote. – tofro Jul 31 '16 at 7:08

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.