By Ling-Ling Lisa Shih
也 (yě) vs. 还(hái)
Although both 还 (hái) and 也 (yě) mean “also,” but 还 also means “in addition, additionally.” It is important to note the following rule, in order to use them correctly.
When 2 clauses sharing the same subject, you can use either 还 (hái) or 也 (yě)， but when 2 clauses referring to different subjects, only 也 (yě) can be used.
- With the same subject, you can use either 还 or 也.
I like to eat American food. I also like to eat Chinese.
2. With the different subjects, you can only use 也 (yě).
还 means “also, in addition, additionally.” When you say, “我喜欢看电影，我的男朋友还喜欢看电影。” It just doesn’t make sense to say, “I like to watch movies, my boy friend, in addition, likes to watch movies.” But it is perfectly o.k. to say, “我喜欢看电影，还喜欢看书。” （I like to watch movies; in addition, I like to read book.”
More info about the usage of 还：
Beside meaning “also,” 还 (hái) can also be used to mean “still” and “yet.”
他还是一个小孩子。Tā háishi yí ge xiǎo háizi. He is still a little child.
他还没有来。Tá hái méiyou lái. He has not come yet.
我还没有吃饭。Wǒ hái méiyou chīfàn. I have not eaten yet.