Translation:She is the woman who eats chicken.
Thank you, but I'm still a bit confused, sorry!
Here is an example in english of what I'm confused about:
"The kid who is eating some crayons." (currently eating an undefined amount of crayons)
"The kid who eats crayons." (the kid who is known to eat crayons, but not necessarily doing so at the moment)
Would both these sentences be expressed as: "Quel enfant?" "L'enfant qui mange des crayons"?
1) Now, you are referring to "some" in front of a plural, countable noun.
In French, "un" or "une" = a/one, and those indefinite articles have a plural form: "des".
- un crayon - des crayons = a/one crayon - crayons.
Sometimes, English speakers add "some" to a plural noun, to mean "an undetermined number of things". So "some crayons" should mean "several, more than one crayons".
2) In addition, French verbs do not have a continuous form :
- l'enfant qui mange des crayons = the child who eats (some) crayons OR the child who is eating (some) crayons.
If you want to insist on the fact that the child is currently eating crayons, you will use the phrase "être en train de + infinitive", which correctly expresses an action in progress at the time you speak:
- l'enfant qui est en train de manger des crayons = the child who is eating (some) crayons.
Is your second point an example of French not having the Gerund Tense?
To be honest I had never been thought this tense in English, pehaps because I now read that it is the same as the Present Participle in English, moreover I did not recall learning it in French in High-School, and so when I came to the Gerund lesson in Spanish I was very confused as to what it is.
No, but it is used constantly. Not just for women.
- "Who is that?!"
- "That's the guy I told you about. The one that is dating that woman from Kentucky that likes to eat chicken."
- "She eats chicken? That's disgusting. Give me a bland brick of soy and some tap water. Mmm mmm...that's good eating."
Your examples do not really match with the sentence under scrutiny. In "Who is that?", "that" is a demonstrative pronoun, not a relative pronoun. "That's the guy" is a correct way to use "that" but "that" is again not a relative pronoun. In the next sentence, "that" can be used because you are not talking about a specific subject. The third example makes the least sense, because "that" does not refer to the woman, but the fact that she eats chicken. And "that's good eating" does not refer to a human being either.
Have a look at wikipedia's entries for "who" as a relative pronoun and the entry for restrictive or non-restrictive relative clauses:
As we are talking about a specific person, I would say that the relative pronoun should be "who".
I wasn't implying that the use of "that" was correct, just that it is used. A lot of words are misused. The only "that"s in my example that were meant to represent a person (like was suggested by John) was "The one (the man) that", where "that" should be replaced by "who", and "that (the woman) likes chicken", again with "who". Again, I fully agree that "that" is not right, but it is used.
:) Yes, it's something that cannot be avoided. It's important that people learn how a language works, but there is no point in being a purist about everything. Languages are constantly evolving and that evolution is not caused by the people who write text books; it's caused by people that are using the language ;)
Merriam Webster is in favor of using "that" in this context:
"In current usage that refers to persons or things, which chiefly to things and rarely to subhuman entities, who chiefly to persons and sometimes to animals. The notion that that should not be used to refer to persons is without foundation; such use is entirely standard."
"une poule" is generally alive and it is a hen, laying eggs. More rarely, it is used as a cooking recipe "la poule au pot", which historically was the favorite dish of our king Henri IV (who was murdered in 1610!).
"un poulet" is the generic word for hens and roosters (poultry), particularly when they are not adult yet and also the name of the meat.
Note that "un poussin" is a baby chicken (chick). The color "jaune poussin" (invariable) is a light yellow.
How do you distinguish between "the woman who eats chicken" and "the woman who is eating chicken", which, as I understand it, have different meanings in english, the former describing the woman's general behaviour and the latter meaning the woman is eating now.
Should "the woman eating chicken" be an acceptable (and more natural in everyday English) alternative to "the woman who is eating chicken"? It was marked wrong