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Kevin dislikes apples as much as bananas.

Does the statement suggest that Kevin has an equal dislike for apples and bananas?

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"As much as" implies an equal feeling. Note that there's a syntactic ambiguity built into this construction, depending on the ellipsis involved. Let's take the example

Kevin dislikes apples as much as Sarah.

This could mean that

Kevin dislikes apples as much as he dislikes Sarah

or that

Kevin dislikes apples as much as Sarah dislikes apples.

If we refer to Sarah by pronoun, we can resolve the ambiguity because the first construct requires "as much as her" and the second requires "as much as she."

In your example, the semantics allow only for the first construct because bananas can't like or dislike anything. Thus Kevin treats both apples and bananas with equal distaste.

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  • All true, but TMI. Your first sentence, plus an apt citation, would have sufficed. Sep 28, 2015 at 9:33

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