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Inner French ep. 001, quiz 49: plutôt

    Improve your French listening skills with this clip from Inner French podcast. Start at any level – A1 or advanced DELF takers.

    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.

    26 seconds, 56 words

    Press play and take the transcription quiz to practice your French listening comprehension.
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    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.


    Instead of me adding my insights, let’s hear yours. 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 grammaire, ça peut vous aider à comprendre quelque chose quand il y a un message que vous ne comprenez pas, ou une structure que vous ne comprenez pas. Mais la grammaire, ça ne doit pas être la base de votre apprentissage. Essayez plutôt de comprendre des choses, de comprendre des vidéos, de comprendre des articles.

    Grammar can help you understand something when there is a message you don’t understand, or a structure you don’t understand. But grammar should not be the basis of your learning. Instead, try to understand things, understand videos, understand articles.

    The above translation from Deepl. Source

    What does “plutôt” mean?

    “Plutôt” is a French adverb that can be translated to “rather,” “instead,” or “preferably” in English. In the context of the sentence “Essayez plutôt de comprendre des choses,” it means “rather” or “instead” and suggests that the listener should try to understand things rather than doing something else.

    This word is quite common in French and is used in both spoken and written language. It can be used to express a preference or an alternative to a previous suggestion.

    For example:

    • “Je préfère plutôt prendre le train que l’avion” – “I would rather take the train than the plane.”
    • “Plutôt que de sortir ce soir, je vais rester à la maison” – “Instead of going out tonight, I’m going to stay at home.”

    “Plutôt” is derived from the Latin word “potius,” which means “rather” or “preferably.” It’s a common word in French and can be used in a variety of contexts. Additionally, in French, “plutôt” is often used as an interjection to express surprise or incredulity, similar to how English speakers might say “really?” or “seriously?”

    What does “ça ne doit pas” mean?

    “Ça ne doit pas” is a French phrase that means “it must not” or “it should not”. It’s a negative statement that is used to express something that is prohibited, forbidden or not recommended.

    For example:

    • “Ça ne doit pas être facile de parler en public” – “It must not be easy to speak in public”
    • “Ça ne doit pas être pris à la légère” – “It should not be taken lightly”

    This phrase is quite common in French, and it’s used in formal and informal settings. It’s often used to indicate rules or regulations, warnings, or advice.

    Fun fact: The French language has many nuances and variations, and “ça ne doit pas” is just one of the many ways to express prohibition or negation in French. Other similar phrases include “il ne faut pas”, “on ne doit pas”, “il est interdit de”, “il est défendu de”, etc.

    What does “la base de” mean?

    “La base de” is a French phrase that translates to “the basis of” or “the foundation of” in English.

    The word “base” comes from the Latin “basis,” meaning “foundation,” and it is used in French to refer to the starting point or fundamental element of something. When combined with “de,” it indicates that something is the starting point or foundation of a particular concept or idea.

    For example:

    • “La base de la cuisine française, c’est la qualité des ingrédients.” – “The foundation of French cuisine is the quality of the ingredients.”
    • “La base de toute communication efficace, c’est l’écoute active.” – “The basis of all effective communication is active listening.”

    This phrase is commonly used in French to explain or define the fundamental principles or elements of a concept, idea, or process. It’s also often used in educational or academic contexts to introduce or describe a subject.

    Fun fact: “La base” has become a popular slang term in French youth culture to refer to something that is essential or basic. For example, “Le jean, c’est la base” means “Jeans are essential.”

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