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  5. "Mais je suis français et un …

"Mais je suis français et un enfant de ma génération."

Translation:But I am French and a child of my generation.

January 28, 2013



When would anybody use this sentence?


Obviously it would be said in reply to a person who is not French and is at least a quarter of a century older or younger than than the speaker and who has called into question the speaker's behaviour or opinion relating to a matter of morality, clothing, entertainment, manners etc.


Good point :) Merci


If you Google the French phrase then you reach: https://stephanekapitaniuk.toutpoursagloire.com/livre-les-freres-karamazov/ See paragraph three.


I could imagine Mylène Farmer saying it, especially when talking about disenchantment.


Thank you for the mention of Mylene Farmer. I've just found a new singer to listen to! So have a lingot, with love.


I came here for your comment.


Perhaps if someone is being questioned for their "promiscuity"


Isn't everyone technically a child of their own generation? That's, like, the whole meaning of the word "generation".


Yes but to say it this way, in English at least, is to say it is particularly so or that you are uncomfortable with habits and thoughts outside of your generation. Like a 60 year old man wearing his hair very long, listening to the Grateful Dead all the time and trying to find home grown weed.


Generally I would say "a product of my generation" but perhaps other places use child


I would suggest that the meaning is different.

"je suis un enfant de ma génération" just means that I am living as people of my age are living.


Very nice. Hi Sitesurf I have two questions. Can we just say Je suis enfant de ma génération ? And next if i may ask how did you come up with your site name Sitesurf? Very astute. Thanks


No, you can't use "enfant" without its article in this sentence. Yet you can use it in masculine of feminine:

Je suis un/une enfant de ma génération

I chose this name a long time ago, in the early years of the Internet, discovering new websites every day, doing some kind of "site surfing", if you see what I mean.


Why not although? I used "although"... why was it marked wrong?


the problem is that "although" back translates to "bien que" (conjunction).

if you don't want to use "but" to start a sentence, you may go for "yet".


If you started a sentence with 'although,' it would be a clause (usually an introductory clause), not a grammatical sentence. If you said, 'Although I am a product of my generation.' Someone would expect you to continue with a main clause: Although I am a product of my generation, I respect the wisdom and experience of previous generations.

In some languages - like French and Polish - you can idiomatically start a sentence with 'but.' In Polish, for example, if you see something you like, you can say, 'But fine!' You can also say something like, 'But this weather!' The intonation - and the situation - tell people that you are remarking favorably or unfavorably on some thing or situation.

The 'rule' about not beginning a sentence with a conjunction is pedantry. It's very common in spoken English. If you listen to a native-speaker of English speaking casually (not from a prepared, written, formal text) and try to imagine where all the full stops (periods) would be in the written text, you would find many sentences beginning with 'and' or 'but' - either that, or you'd think the person was saying some extremely long sentences and using 'and' and 'but' frequently.

In writing, especially formal writing, it is a bit frowned upon to begin a sentence with and, but or nor. But not always. Sometimes it is done for rhetorical effect. And sometimes it's quite effective, for example, if breaking a sentence into two sentences, one beginning with 'but' and both having the same rhythm: 'I could not live. But he could not die.' Because you would read a longer pause between two syllables, starting the second sentence with the conjunction builds a little suspense and strengthens the contrast between the two sentences in a way that combining the same words into one sentence would not allow.

The rule you were taught should only be broken consciously and with an intended effect. If you can't explain why you chose to write a sentence beginning with 'But,' then you probably don't know why and shouldn't do it.


When I was younger I was taught not to start a sentence with but, but that rule seems to have changed completely.


I feel like most of these sentences are missing giant chunks that would make it more understandable but oh well


Why not "...a child of my times" which sounds more natural English to me.


I am a product of my generation.


let's hope they won't put this question in the listening and typing part. (listen and type)


Super weird sentence...


Nothing actually very weird about it all. I tried earlier (comment below) to put it into context. I can quite easily imagine using it in a conversation. Curious, how it's generated this much comentary.


Since a woman is speaking, wouldn't she say je suis française ?


I'd tend to say "I'm a product of my generation." It sound funny saying "I'm a child of my generation" especially at my age


'A child of my generation' is not an English idiom. As an alternative to this superlatively literal approach to translation, I would propose 'a child of my time' as an equivalent expression.


On my Android Sony Xperia this sentence doesn't work. The tiles are already locked in the finished position. I have been having this problem a lot since these new questions arrived but never before. Also never in the German course. I have reported it multiple times but not had any replies either from the flags or the comments. Sometimes an exercise doesn't work at all and I lose the whole lesson. Annoying when trying to maintain your streak late at night! Are any other users having this problem? It doesn't happen on my tablet, but I prefer using my phone. Is there any other way I can report this to Duolingo? There is clearly something wrong with the coding. Thanks, Philippa


Thinking of the "C'est" vs "Il est" rule, could one say "Mais il est français et un enfant de ma génération", ie use a first phrase beginning with an adjective to sneak in a second phrase beginning with an article onto "Il est"??


Yes it is possible, maybe with "sa" generation to be coherent with "il".


Thanks, I find this rule very odd, and especially seeing as it only seems to apply to the third person - I presume one can say "Je suis un enfant" and "Tu es un enfant" but not "Il est un enfant" or "Ils sont des enfants". It'd be interesting to know why or how it developed.


I wrote Although at the beginning and it didn't accept it, even though Although is a valid translation from mais.


i woud never use this sentence


At the risk of repeating myself I am British and in B ritain we use infant to talk about children up to about the age of 8. And it is also found as that defininition in the Oxford dictionary so it is not just a new born. But in this sentence it is not a child talking or at least not usually it is someone commenting on their life to say that they are a product of their time.


Sometimes language is used figuratively.



I am not sure why but an earlier post did not come up, I am British English in British English an infant can be up to about 8 years old. This expression though is not a child speaking at least not normally it is an older person looking back on what informed their develop e.g. I am a child of the 60's.




Please unlock your cap key.

This means that my attitude, behavior, leisures, centers of interest, etc. are typical of French people my age.


Why not "a son"??


The meaning of this sentence is not clear. Duolingo should not give such kind of sentences.


The sentence is perfectly reasonable. As an example: I can easily imagine having a conversation with a British friend discussing music. He may fondly recall a favourite Pink Floyd album. If I am somewhat younger and with different musical tastes, he might add, "But I am British and a child of my generation." (Perhaps implying that I on the other hand am of a different generation and maybe even from an other culture.)


why not an infant of my generation


"Infant" in English means new born baby in most cases, and "enfont" in french does mean child, which were you referring to?


There is an expression - to be a child of one's generation. So that is why child to me seems correct in this instance and an infant is another term for a young child. For example primary school or infant school. So infant is not necessarily a baby in English in England. So while infant would be unusual I felt it could be acceptable.


Child and infant are not the same though. Here is a definition: child CHīld/Submit noun a young human being below the age of puberty or below the legal age of majority. synonyms: youngster, little one, boy, girl; More a son or daughter of any age. an immature or irresponsible person. "she's such a child!"

in·fant ˈinfənt/Submit noun a very young child or baby. synonyms: baby, newborn, young child, (tiny) tot, little one, papoose; More denoting something in an early stage of its development. modifier noun: infant "the infant science of bio electrical medicine" synonyms: developing, emergent, emerging, embryonic, nascent, incipient, new, fledgling, budding, up-and-coming "an infant stage" LAW a person who has not attained legal majority.

Does this help?


Yes so that confirms that infant and baby are not synonymous thanks.


As a British English person who went to an infant school I have to ask you to check your dictionary and there you should find that a another word for a young child is as I said earlier is also known as an infant. So as I said whilst infant would be an unusual way to express this sentence I wondered whether it was also strictly incorrect, though having thought about it I guess as it is an expression one could argue you have to stick to the expression except that others have already given a variation of the expression here too.

I repeat for the fourth time in British English an infant can speak it is not just a new born. I also repeat that in this sentence the person concern is an older person commenting on their view of the world and that it is coloured by the time in which they were born.


infant = un nourrisson / un nouveau-né

"Infant" does not make any sense in this sentence, unless you want to infer that even before speaking, you were able to have this kind of self-judgement?


Theory can contradict usage and vice versa, and this is a typical case.


An infant can speak but when using an expression like a child of our time, or a child of my generation we are almost looking back as adults to when we grew up and can be into our teens, young adulthood, it does not strictly mean "child" it means as others have said a product of our generation, so whilst I would totally agree as said that infant would not be the norm I am guessing the English got the word infant from enfant and child I guess from kinder, so in theory and it is in theory one might play with the language to say infant of my generation. I went to infant school I was able to speak when I went to infant school and as the Oxford Dictionary shows infant applies in British English not just to young babies.

British A schoolchild between the ages of about four and eight. as modifier ‘their first year at infant school’


Why would someone who is french, learn french with duolingo?


You can take a course to help users with your native tongue if you are able to explain grammar, syntax, usage, etc. in their own language.


Exactly correct! Comments by native speakers here are one of the most useful and enjoyable aspects of DuoLingo. So many issues that otherwise would get "lost in translation" are clarified. Bravo! In fact - standing ovation! Merci mes amis.

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