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Inner French ep. 001, quiz 22: qu’est-ce que c’est

    Improve your French listening skills with this practice exercise from the podcast Inner French. It’s 49 words in 25 seconds, how many can you hear and understand? Start here at any level!

    This clip is from the Inner French podcast Episode 001. Listen and fill in what you hear below. Read more and find a translation below. Find the full podcast here.

    25 seconds, 49 words

    Press play and take the transcription quiz to practice your French listening comprehension.
    (You can use the ⋮ to adjust playback speed)

    , ' '. '- ' ? '.,,..
    hypothèse, ' l'hypothèsecontrôleur.contrôleur '- ' ? 'contrôle.exemple,prenez,contrôleursdemandentavezvoyager.contrôleurcontrôlerespectezrègles.
    hypothèse, c'est l'hypothèsecontrôleur.contrôleur qu'est-ceque c'est ? C'estpersonnecontrôle.Parexemple,prenezmétro,contrôleursquidemandentavezbienticketvoyager.contrôleurcontrôlequerespectezrègles.

    The above audio sample and transcription is from the Inner French podcast episode 001. We do not own the content. Listen to the entire episode here.

    What is?

    What is the point of all this? Well, as I start to plan for my French visa, I realize that there’s a whole lot of French I need. Not just to shop or ask directions in French, but how do I read announcements taped inside the elevator or coordinate with a plumber? Will that be left to my 3 year old to do?

    I have a friend who lived in Beijing 30 years, he doesn’t speak any Chinese. Well, that’s not fair, he can do taxi Chinese – “left turn”, “right turn”, “straight”, “stop”. That’s not my goal living in a foreign country.

    Why do I bring this up? I was just walking the streets of Kyoto and hear two guys speaking French. Back and forth, and there’s still so much I don’t understand. I know I need to put the pedal to the metal on this project. I need to move on to more complicated French. This seems like a step towards easy as compared to the Balades podcast. What do you think?

    While that’s the case, it’s not exactly easy either. Fortunately, it’s a slow pace and the speaker, Hugo, takes time to explain in French any (what he thinks are) new words. Like “contrôleur”. If you found this clip easy, what are you doing to make it harder? Try it on 100% blank, or try to say it exactly in Hugo’s pronunciation, or try to set it to a faster speed.

    What’s opening up for you in this clip? I’m open to any and all feedback, as always. Let me know.

    The snippet in English

    Find a translation of this snippet here, how much of this did you hear?

    La deuxième hypothèse, c’est l’hypothèse du contrôleur. Un contrôleur qu’est-ce que c’est ? C’est une personne qui contrôle. Par exemple, quand vous prenez le métro, il y a des contrôleurs qui vous demandent si vous avez bien votre ticket pour voyager. Le contrôleur contrôle que vous respectez les règles.

    The second hypothesis is the controller hypothesis. What is a controller? It is a person who controls. For example, when you take the subway, there are controllers who ask you if you have your ticket to travel. The controller checks that you respect the rules.

    The above translation from Deepl. Source

    What does “qu’est-ce que c’est” mean?

    “Qu’est-ce que c’est” is a common French phrase used to ask about the nature or identity of something. It is a combination of the words “qu’est-ce” (what is) and “que” (that/it), and “c’est” (it is).

    This question word is used in informal and formal situations, and it’s a polite way to ask for information about an object, person, or situation. It can also be used to ask about an unknown or unfamiliar thing.

    For example, you can use “qu’est-ce que c’est” in the following ways:

    • Qu’est-ce que c’est que ça? (What is that?)
    • Qu’est-ce que c’est que ce bruit? (What’s that noise?)
    • Qu’est-ce que c’est que cette plante? (What’s this plant?)
    • Qu’est-ce que c’est que cette fête? (What’s this party?)

    This question word is commonly used in French, and it’s an essential part of the language.

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