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Passerelles ep. 1, Quiz 68: une pression

    Do you know the phrases ‘pas grandi,’ ‘une pression,’ and ‘choix de vie’? Today’s moderately-paced clip from ‘Passerelles’ delves into growing up without societal pressure in France. Hear these phrases in context as we explore one person’s unique experience in defying norms and making life choices. Take a listen and fill in what you can…

    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.

    8 seconds, 21 words

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

    , '.
    , 'grandienvironnementavaitpressionautournormes.
    Simplement, j'aipasgrandienvironnementyavaitpressionautournormesouchoixvie.


    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?

    Simplement, j’ai pas grandi dans un environnement où il y avait une pression autour des normes ou des choix de vie.

    It’s just that I didn’t grow up in an environment where there was any pressure around standards or lifestyle choices.

    The above translation from Deepl. Source

    What does “grandi” mean?

    “Grandi” is the past participle of the French verb “grandir,” which means “to grow,” “to grow up,” or “to increase in size or stature.” In the context of personal development, it usually refers to emotional or intellectual growth. Depending on the context, “grandi” can describe physical, emotional, or intellectual maturation.


    • “Il a beaucoup grandi depuis la dernière fois que je l’ai vu.” (He has grown a lot since the last time I saw him.)
    • “Elle a grandi dans une petite ville.” (She grew up in a small town.)
    • “Nous avons grandi ensemble.” (We grew up together.)

    When to Use:

    Use “grandi” when referring to growth or development in a variety of contexts—whether you’re talking about a plant, a person, or a company.

    Related Phrases:

    • “Grandir vite” (To grow up fast)
    • “Grandir en sagesse” (To grow in wisdom)


    An antonym for “grandi” in the context of growth could be “rétréci,” which means “shrunken” or “shrunk.” In the context of maturation or growing up, “stagné” (stagnated) could be used to indicate a lack of growth.

    Cultural Notes:

    Growing up and maturation are often discussed topics in French culture, just as they are in many other cultures. Phrases like “Il a bien grandi !” (He has grown up well!) are commonly used to express surprise or approval at someone’s development.

    In Summary:

    “Grandi” encapsulates the concept of growth in various dimensions—physical, emotional, and intellectual. It’s a flexible term you’ll encounter frequently in conversations about development and change. Whether someone is growing taller, maturing emotionally, or expanding their mind, “grandi” is the go-to term to describe this transformation.

    What does “une pression” mean?

    The term “une pression” in French translates to “pressure” in English. It denotes a force or influence that prompts action, often in a specific direction or manner. In the context you provided—une pression autour des normes ou des choix de vie—it refers to societal or peer pressure related to norms or life choices.


    • “Il y a une grande pression pour réussir dans ce domaine.” (There is a lot of pressure to succeed in this field.)
    • “Elle ressent une pression constante pour être parfaite.” (She feels constant pressure to be perfect.)

    When to Use:

    Use “une pression” when discussing any form of pressure—be it emotional, social, or even physical. In the given context, it can be applied to discussions about societal norms, expectations, and the constraints they impose on individual choices.

    Related Phrases:

    • “Subir une pression” (To be under pressure)
    • “Exercer une pression sur quelqu’un” (To put pressure on someone)


    • “Le soulagement” (Relief)
    • “La liberté” (Freedom)

    Different Contexts:

    The term “une pression” is versatile and can change its meaning based on context. While it often refers to emotional or societal pressure, as in the initial explanation, it can also signify other types of force or pressure:

    • Physical Pressure: In physics or engineering, “une pression” refers to mechanical force per unit area.
    • Medical Pressure: In healthcare, it could mean blood pressure, termed as “pression artérielle” in French.
    • Beer: In a casual setting, “une pression” can refer to draught beer, as in ordering “une pression” at a bar.


    • “La pression atmosphérique est élevée aujourd’hui.” (The atmospheric pressure is high today.)
    • “Je vais prendre une pression, s’il vous plaît.” (I’ll have a draught beer, please.)

    When Not to Use:

    Avoid using “une pression” when you intend to convey an absence of pressure or freedom of choice, for which antonyms like “le soulagement” or “la liberté” would be more appropriate.

    “Une pression” encapsulates the idea of force or influence that propels action or decision-making, often under constraint. In discussions about societal norms or life choices, it effectively captures the intangible yet powerful forces that can guide or limit one’s options.

    What does “choix de vie” mean?

    The phrase “choix de vie” translates to “life choices” or “lifestyle choices” in English. It refers to the decisions an individual makes that significantly impact the course of their life. These can include career paths, relationships, places of residence, and even philosophies or values by which one lives.


    • “Il a fait le choix de vie de déménager à la campagne.” (He made the life choice to move to the countryside.)
    • “Les choix de vie écologiques sont importants pour elle.” (Eco-friendly lifestyle choices are important to her.)

    Related Phrases:

    • “Décision de vie” (Life decision)
    • “Style de vie” (Lifestyle)

    Cultural and Linguistic Notes:

    In French culture, “choix de vie” is often discussed in contexts ranging from personal development to social debates. For instance, choosing to live a minimalist lifestyle or opting for a less conventional career path might be seen as significant “choix de vie.”

    When Not to Use:

    The phrase might not be suitable when discussing trivial or inconsequential decisions. In such cases, you might simply use “choix” (choice) without the additional emphasis provided by “de vie.”

    In Summary:

    “Choix de vie” refers to significant decisions that shape the course of an individual’s life. The term is versatile, used in various contexts to highlight the impact of choices on life’s trajectory. It does not typically apply to trivial or everyday decisions.

    What is opening up for you?

    Comment below with the words you thought you heard, where you struggled, where you surprised yourself, or what you thought about this clip. Every little bit inspires other learners, thank you for being that inspiration to others on their French fluency journey!

    Do you know the phrases ‘pas grandi,’ ‘une pression,’ and ‘choix de vie’? Today’s moderately-paced clip from ‘Passerelles’ delves into growing up without societal pressure in France. Hear these phrases in context as we explore one person’s unique experience in defying norms and making life choices. Take a listen and fill in what you can…

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