I heard it expressed on gotel radio station; "Don't go nowhere" can it be correct?

  • Double negatives like that are common in conversation, especially in the conversation of those without much schooling.
    – TimR
    May 12, 2018 at 13:17
  • It's not really Standard English, but it's grammatical in many dialects.
    – user3395
    May 12, 2018 at 13:21
  • If a Nobel laureate uses "You ain't going nowhere", who are we to quibble ;-) bobdylan.com/songs/you-aint-goin-nowhere
    – djna
    May 12, 2018 at 16:02

1 Answer 1


This is an example of a double negative. Traditional formal English considers these to be poor style. However these forms are fairly common in casual speech.

In the example the meaning is clear "Don't go nowhere." is equivalent to "Don't go anywhere". Sometimes the double negative introduces an ambiguity: "I don't know nothing about it" could be understood to be a casual way of saying "I don't know anything about it." or a way of saying "I do know something about it." (We will use a range of cues, such as accent, presumed age, class, context and expected meaning to understand which is meant.)

Learners should generally avoid these double negative forms, as they are generally considered to be "poor English". But be aware that native speakers will use them from time to time.

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