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Passerelles ep. 1, Quiz 49: choisir au hasard

    “pour dire les choses autrement”, “percevoir”, “choisis pas au hasard”. and “prendre une décision”. How many of those phrases do you recognize? How many can you pick up in this slow paced clip from Passerelles? Hear them all and explore their meaning in today’s quiz.

    This clip is from Passerelles Episode 1. Listen and fill in what you hear below. Read more and find a translation below. Listen to the full episode here.

    19 seconds, 37 words

    This audio sample and transcription is from Passerelles ep. 1. We do not own the content. Listen to the entire episode

    ,.,., ',.
    choses,perçoitvraiment.percevoir,choisishasard.Choisirhasard, 'décisionréflexion,critèresobjectifs.
    direchosesautrement,neseperçoitpasvraimentavecâgeréel.verbepercevoir,nechoisispashasard.Choisirhasard, c'estprendredécisionréflexion,critèresobjectifs.

    to pick randomly

    What’s opening up for you with this clip?

    The snippet in English

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

    Pour dire les choses autrement, on ne se perçoit pas vraiment avec notre âge réel. Ce verbe percevoir, je ne le choisis pas au hasard. Choisir au hasard, c’est prendre une décision sans réflexion, sans critères objectifs.

    To put it another way, we don’t really perceive ourselves with our real age. I don’t choose the verb “to perceive” at random. To choose at random is to make a decision without reflection, without objective criteria.

    The above translation from Deepl. Source

    What does “pour dire les choses autrement” mean?

    “Pour dire les choses autrement” is a nuanced French phrase that acts as a bridge between an initial statement and a rephrased or clarified version of that statement. Translated, it means “to put things another way” or “to say things differently.”

    The phrase is commonly used when the speaker wants to provide additional clarity, restate their point in simpler terms, or emphasize a point using different words. It’s a handy tool for ensuring comprehension or adding weight to a particular thought.


    • “L’art contemporain peut parfois être difficile à comprendre. Pour dire les choses autrement, il nécessite souvent une certaine réflexion pour en saisir la signification.” (Contemporary art can sometimes be hard to understand. To put it another way, it often requires some reflection to grasp its meaning.)
    • “Il est très compétent dans son domaine. Pour dire les choses autrement, il est l’expert sur ce sujet.” (He is very skilled in his field. To say things differently, he’s the expert on this topic.)

    In terms of its frequency, “pour dire les choses autrement” is a fairly common expression, especially in spoken language. It is particularly useful in discussions or debates where clarity and emphasis are paramount. You might also encounter similar expressions

    • En d’autres termes” (In other words) This is probably the most common way to introduce a rephrasing. Example: “Il est vraiment têtu. En d’autres termes, une fois qu’il a une idée en tête, il ne la lâche pas.” (He’s really stubborn. In other words, once he has an idea in his head, he doesn’t let it go.)
    • Autrement dit” (That is to say) Frequently used in both spoken and written language. Example: “Cette machine est hors service. Autrement dit, elle ne fonctionne plus.” (This machine is out of order. That is to say, it’s not working anymore.)
    • C’est-à-dire” (That is /or/ i.e.) Commonly used to clarify or provide specifics about a previous statement. Example: “Il adore les agrumes, c’est-à-dire les oranges, les citrons et les pamplemousses.” (He loves citrus fruits, that is, oranges, lemons, and grapefruits.)
    • Pour reformuler” (To rephrase) Less common than the others, but can still be found especially in academic or formal discussions. Example: “La biodiversité est essentielle pour l’équilibre écologique. Pour reformuler, la variété des espèces garantit un écosystème sain.” (Biodiversity is crucial for ecological balance. To rephrase, the variety of species ensures a healthy ecosystem.)

    In the vast spectrum of the French language, “pour dire les choses autrement” stands as a testament to the importance of clear communication and the many ways a single idea can be presented. It encourages listeners to consider a perspective from multiple angles, enriching the overall conversation.

    What does “percevoir” mean?

    “Percevoir” is a versatile French verb that carries with it a sense of receiving or detecting something. Let’s dissect its various nuances and usages:

    Literal Meaning: At its root, “percevoir” translates to “to perceive” or “to sense” in English.

    Different Usages and Contexts:

    To Perceive or Sense: “Percevoir” can relate to sensory perception, such as sight, sound, touch, etc.

    • “Je perçois un léger parfum de lavande dans cette pièce.” (I perceive a faint scent of lavender in this room.)

    To Collect or Receive (often money): A common context for “percevoir” is in relation to receiving money, especially as part of an official or formal process.

    • “Il a perçu son héritage après le décès de son grand-père.” (He received his inheritance after the passing of his grandfather.)

    To Detect or Notice: It can also denote the act of detecting something subtle or not immediately obvious.

    • “Il est difficile de percevoir les nuances dans cette affaire.” (It’s hard to detect the nuances in this matter.)

    To Understand or Grasp: In some contexts, it implies a mental realization or understanding of a particular concept or idea.

    • “Après des heures de leçon, il a finalement perçu la complexité du sujet.” (After hours of lessons, he finally grasped the complexity of the topic.)

    Idiomatic Usage: “Percevoir quelque chose de” can be used idiomatically to mean getting an impression or vibe from something or someone.

    • “Je perçois une certaine réticence de sa part.” (I sense a certain reluctance on his part.)

    In summary, “percevoir” is a multifaceted verb that encompasses the act of receiving, detecting, or understanding. Recognizing its context is crucial to capturing its essence in any given scenario. This verb truly highlights how language can encompass both tangible actions (like receiving money) and intangible processes (like sensing or understanding).

    What does “choisir au hasard” mean?

    “Choisir au hasard” is a phrase that invites one into the realm of randomness and chance, while its counterpart, “choisir pas au hasard,” hints at a deliberate, purposeful decision. Let’s dive into these phrases:

    Choisir au hasard: “To choose at random” or “to pick randomly.” This phrase implies that the selection is made without any particular method or conscious choice, often leaving the outcome to chance.

    • “Pour le jeu, nous devons choisir au hasard un nom dans le chapeau.” (For the game, we have to pick a name from the hat at random.)

    Choisir pas au hasard: “To choose not at random” or more naturally, “to choose deliberately.” This phrase implies a conscious, specific choice, suggesting there is intention or reasoning behind the selection.

    • “J’ai choisi cette université pas au hasard; elle a le meilleur programme de recherche dans mon domaine.” (I chose this university deliberately; it has the best research program in my field.)

    Common Contexts:

    • Games and Contests: “Choisir au hasard” might be used in contexts where fairness is important, such as drawing lots or picking a random participant.
    • Decision-making: “Choisir pas au hasard” could be used to emphasize a well-informed or intentional decision, like choosing a particular school, job, or even dish on a menu based on specific criteria.


    • For “choisir au hasard”: “sélectionner au hasard,” “tirer au sort”
    • For “choisir pas au hasard”: “choisir délibérément,” “choisir avec intention”

    In conclusion, while both phrases revolve around the act of choosing, the inclusion or exclusion of “au hasard” makes a world of difference, swinging the pendulum between randomness and deliberateness. Recognizing the subtle nuance between the two can provide deeper insights into the speaker’s intentions.

    What does “prendre une décision” mean?

    “Prendre une décision” is an interesting look into how languages differ in expressing familiar concepts. The phrase gives insight into the subtle nuances of the French language and how it relates to the act of decision-making.

    In English, the most common way to express this idea is “to make a decision,” but in French, “prendre” (which translates to “take”) is the verb of choice. “Prendre une décision” captures the essence of arriving at a conclusion or choosing a specific path after considering various options.

    • “Il lui faut du temps pour prendre une décision.” (He needs time to make a decision.)

    The phrase can be used to depict the resolution or the outcome of a thinking process.

    • “Après une longue discussion, ils ont finalement pris une décision.” (After a long discussion, they finally made a decision.)

    Sometimes, it can also convey the internal struggle or deliberation someone might experience.

    • “Prendre une décision concernant son avenir n’est pas facile.” (Making a decision about one’s future is not easy.)

    Cultural and Linguistic Nuances:

    • Act of Ownership: By using “prendre” (take) instead of “faire” (make/do), the French language might be emphasizing the act of owning the decision or accepting responsibility for it. You’re taking it upon yourself, so to speak.
    • Linguistic Variations: Different languages have their unique ways of expressing similar concepts. Just as English speakers “make decisions,” “have ideas,” or “take showers,” French speakers “take decisions,” “have envy,” or “take baths.”


    • “Arriver à une décision” (come to a decision)
    • “Trancher” (to settle a matter, more informal and decisive)

    Related Expressions:

    • “Mettre du temps à prendre une décision” translates to “to take a long time to make a decision.”
    • “Prendre une grande décision” refers to making a significant or major decision.

    In summary, “prendre une décision” offers a fascinating glimpse into how different languages handle common life processes. While English might lean more into the creation aspect with “make,” French focuses on the ownership and acceptance part of deciding with “take.” This slight difference beautifully showcases the rich tapestries that languages weave in expressing human experiences.

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    “pour dire les choses autrement”, “percevoir”, “choisis pas au hasard”. and “prendre une décision”. How many of those phrases do you recognize? How many can you pick up in this slow paced clip from Passerelles? Hear them all and explore their meaning in today’s quiz.

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