"C'est mon métier."

Translation:It's my occupation.

March 17, 2013

98 Comments
This discussion is locked.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/FrenchAddict7

Can travail and metier be interchangeable?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/n6zs

Usually, no.

  • Travail, boulot, and emploi all refer to the work one does to earn money.
  • Métier is one's profession, vocation, trade, craft, occupation, or special area of experience.
  • Career, though similar, is translated "la carrière".

It's true that métier is used informally as "job", but be aware that travail, boulot, and emploi are more common and of all these, "boulot" is the most informal way to refer to (just) a job. I.e., "boulot" is not your profession, trade, craft, or occupation; it's just where you go to put in your time and collect your wages.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/oskalingo

I translated as “This is my work”.

I am not necessarily arguing for this to be accepted (I didn't report it) but I used ‘work’ in the older sense of that which you wright in the world, that which occupies you both effortfully and vocationally. As an example, a sculptor may show you their studio in which there might be a partially finished sculpture and say “This is my work” and mean not just the piece they're currently working on but this is what they work at, this is their trade, their craft, their work.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/n6zs

And in the sense of one's trade or craft, yes, that is their work (métier). If you are showing a product of one's work, i.e., a (piece of) work, it is l'œuvre (f). The challenge from the English side is that we need to use caution about what French word we apply to a particular situation because "boulot", for example, has a decidedly mundane connotation to it. As you know, there is considerable overlap in both languages so sometimes it seems like splitting hairs when dealing with job, work, occupation, trade, profession, and career.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Marie282520

N6ZS? Wouldn't the word "work" work in that sentence also? Can that be added? My work is office work. My job is an office job. My work is all-consuming. My job is all-consuming. My work is half time. My job is half time. They seem interchangeable in English. No?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/ColinCanuck

Overlapping, but not totally interchangeable. Words have connotations. "job" implies something you do for money but don't necessarily enjoy, you might say "it's just a job". Also you might have successive jobs that were very different, but equally unskilled. That would be "houblot"

Metier, is more like profession. It's what you think of yourself as, even if you are currently out of work. It's what you would write on your passport. "I am a computer programmer", "I am a dentist".

"Travail" is somewhere in between. It's the noun form of the verb "to work". so "Je suis un professeur. C'est mon metier. Je vais au travail en voiture."


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Tom419655

"Craft" was not accepted. How many others among the valid synonyms you've listed here remain to be added to DL's list?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Sitesurf

Actually, someone had surreptitiously removed "craft" from the list, so I added it again and released the correct answers stuck in the user-report box.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Tom419655

I was notified this morning that 'craft' has been added to the list of accepted translations.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Tom419655

Profession is accepted.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/MrPoo7

No, it wasn’t, as that’s what I wrote.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/MSMDjC

So would saying career (which wasn't accepted) not correctly translate the sentiment of this sentence?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/DianaM
  • 1157

It doesn't sound quite right to me. Your "métier" is what you do, whether craft, trade, or profession, but a career (une carrière) is more about the arc of your working life - "In my career as an engineer, I worked in several different capacities." You make, or build, a career; I wouldn't use those verbs with "profession", "trade" or "craft".


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/muizza11

Merci beaucoup


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/french4lcc

I am curious as to why "It's my job" wouldn't be a good English translation, since in English "job" is considered a proper characterization of one's profession.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/DianaM
  • 1157

They are not necessarily equivalent. An actor may be working as a waiter - his job is waiter, his profession is acting. A microbiologist may be working as a tutor, etc., etc.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/french4lcc

Well, true, but just based on the sentence as it stands by itself, it's not really calling on lot of context to determine such distinctions. And what you're saying calls for more context than that simple statement calls for. My issue here is, "métier" means one's profession, which, just by this no-context statement itself, can also describe one's job. Are there more words in French that distinguish "job" from "profession" even when just used in a statement with no other context? If so, THEN I could see not translating "job".


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/jobeth.mur

Yes, travail is specifically a job, as opposed to a career or profession.

No one would say their profession is being a hamburger flipper at McD's. That is their job (travail) while likely on the way to bigger and better things, like a doctor (métier).


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/MandyB11

Métier (sometimes written - incorrectly - without the accent) is a word used in English to describe one's best ability, and/or the job for which one is best suited. "He's discovered his métier," can be said when talking about someone who's (finally? It can take some people a long time!) found the job for which they have the most talent and interest. So if you think of it in the English context, remembering "profession" or "craft" (in the work context: say, carpenter? Chef?) as the preferred translation might help. It doesn't have to be the sort of job one would usually call a profession over "just a job". If you're particularly good at something, and enjoy it, it can be your métier, even if others don't see it that way.

I hope I haven't muddied the waters here! I'll leave others to give you job synonyms :D


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Mihaela6

I think that in English this should not be translated as "job". In fact someone can work as "baby-sitter" being a "nurse", for example. So "metier" should be understood as the "profession" rather than a current job.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/n6zs

Métier is generally taken as profession/craft/trade/ocupation, but is also used informally as "job".


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/babybrotherangel

I tried field. what field of education are you in. I think it fits, non


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/n6zs

When the top three hints are "profession", "trade", and "craft"? http://www.wordreference.com/fren/m%C3%A9tier


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/cogges

I also tried "field", which was accepted as a translation of "métier" in a previous sentence. I thought it meant the field you work in, your area of expertise.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/n6zs

When you mean "field (of knowledge)", the French term of choice would be "domaine" (m). Source: Oxford French Dictionary


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Colibritastic

Seems like Boulot in French is like Chamba in Spanish. They seem to have a "Daily Grind" feel to them.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/marceauxyz

Yes you would say in spoken french "boulot" or "job", but not in written french.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/EeshaniDasGupta

Why is the "It is my occupation" marked wrong? Can't "It's" and "It is" be interchanged?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/DianaM
  • 1157

Yes, they can. Duo, however, has a very difficult time with apostrophes, and not infrequently gets them wrong. You're right, Duo is wrong, you can try reporting it.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Gini558167

For métier I put field, which was rejected in favor of métier (in English). In a previous question, I used job for métier, and was told it should be field. Hard to please DL sometimes. I might well use métier in English, and both of my friends would understand, but nobody else.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Sitesurf

"my field" = mon domaine.

To translate "mon métier", you can use "craft/trade/profession" but there is no exact translation. "Un métier" is a combination of know-how and experience.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/SimiLanga

Can métier also mean profession? In English occupation and profession are interchangeable


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/DianaM
  • 1157

Knowledgeable people here on this page have repeatedly defined "métier" as "profession/trade/craft".

I wouldn't say profession and occupation are necessarily interchangeable, though. An occupation can be any kind of steady employment; a profession certainly implies an occupation that carries a higher status, or at least requires a certain amount of expertise.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/MaggsQ

Because metier is a masculine word, 'mon' is always the correct direct possessive to use, right? I don't/can't change it to the feminine version because I'm a female speaking?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/_Avencia_

Yes; in French, possessive words match the gender of the thing owned, not the gender of the owner.
The exception is when the thing owned starts with a vowel, in which case you use the masculine possessive word to make the sounds flow better: Mon ami = my friend, mon amie = my female friend


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Lbark

Isn't metier an English word too?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/n6zs

It's métier in British English, which is a bit odd of itself since it is spelled with an accented character which exposes it as a borrowed word. I have never heard the term used in US English. I would not use it.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/peephole

I definitely use and hear the word in US English. It's my métier!


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Lisaskier

It's definitely a word used in British english, so much so that I really struggle to think of the non-french equivalent! ;}

Duo marked me wrong for using it :[


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/MatthewMas366978

I'm an American with British parents and I grew up hearing this word. So I tried the same thing and was surprised Duolingo didn't take it.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Sitesurf

It is accepted now, even if it is much less common than other translations, including among British English speakers. https://www.collinsdictionary.com/dictionary/english/metier


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/haedehr

why is "il est" is not used?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/janncole

Because the possessive mon is used to modify the noun. About.com French language c'est vs il est gives more info.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/KimSCasey

Can 'metier' mean 'hobby'?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/n6zs

"Hobby" is "passe-temps" (m). "Métier" is profession, trade or craft.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/saibroniq

can "métier" also mean career?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/n6zs

For "career", the natural choice would be "carrière" (f). Although "carrière" is sometimes translated as "profession", "profession" does not back-translate to "carrière". Go figure. In which case, use "profession" (f).


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/hllsen

Why "this is my expertise" is not accepted ?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/sean.mullen

"My expertise" would be better translated as « ma compétence ».


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Sitesurf

"expertise" and "compétence" are not quite the same.

"expertise" should be "une expertise"

"une compétence" should be "skill, ability, competence or competency" depending on context.

"un métier" is a combination of an area of expertise and the experience gained in this area.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/dVMP6
  • 1266

What about when someone is thanking you for something and you say back " No problem, it is my job!" Would that be métier? Also, how would you say "a job well done?"


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Sitesurf

"no problem, it is my job" = pas de problème, c'est mon travail / c'est mon boulot (informal)

"a job well done" = un travail/boulot bien fait


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Colin178883

What is wrong with it is my speciality


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Rumactree

I think you’d use « spécialité »


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Pam98991

@sitesurf: I work at a jewelry store. Sometimes when I help the customers with something, they thank me and I say ‘no problem, that’s my job’ Can I say ‘ pas de problemme, c’est mon métier?’ Merci


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Sitesurf

If what you do for your customers is on the task list of your job description, "c'est mon travail" is enough.

If you go beyond that, with insights about a specific aspect of your profession and experience as a whole, and they comment on your deep knowledge or helpful advice, you can use "c'est mon métier".


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Wmconlon

It's been a long time since school for me, but I thought I would try 'It is my major,' which would be the field of study/expertise of a student.

How would your major subject of study be translated?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Sitesurf

C'est mon domaine (field of knowledge).


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Rumactree

Could I have written: “it is my calling” for this? Or would that be another word?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Sitesurf

I think it would be "c'est ma vocation".


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/DorothyDel2

Metier is an acceptable translation in English, meaning trade or profession. Why is it marked incorrect?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Sitesurf

"Métier" is back again on the list of accepted translations.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/d10MplTj

I tried "vocation" just to see what Duo might think' but was gonged. I think I was correct and n6zs seems to agree, and he is never wrong.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Sitesurf

"Vocation" is "une vocation", which basically is a feeling, not an activity which is what "un métier" is. If you read the rest of the thread and open a dictionary, I'm pretty sure you will understand what "un métier" is.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/claireyy16

can you say "it's my job"?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Lisa.Simone

My answer was literally, "it's my occupation". Duo marked it wrong because I didn't capitalise the letter "I"? When I tried to flag it the list of options didn't include "my answer should have been accepted"


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Amy315157

I used the word "field" and was counted wrong


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/CliveOldBoy

Well job was rejected for occupation when I used it on here.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Matthew986472

If métier mean occupation, what's the word for career?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Sitesurf

Une carrière.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/OliviaLiu32

my french tutor says i pronounce it right but duolingo says im wrong


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/DianaM
  • 1157

You have a human being, why struggle with the highly unreliable computer? You can turn off the microphone option. I did years ago.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Bella-Swan14

Does occupation mean work, or job?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/sam220011

C est =it's and this is?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/sam220011

C est can be used for both "its" and "this is" right


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Sitesurf

C'est can be used for "it is" and "this is". The contracted form of "it is" is "it's".

"Its" is a possessive.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/BeasieK

Translated this as 'It is my occupation'. Why was my answer not accepted?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/hrcoble

Would "career" not work here for métier? I'm pretty sure that's what I learned in school (although it has been a while).


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/ph.NbQ4P6

What does mean occupation


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/DianaM
  • 1157

What you do for a living, how you occupy your time. It implies something a bit more than just "a job". I am an actor, that is what I would answer if asked my occupation. When I was younger I sometimes took a job as a waitress or an office worker, but my occupation was still acting.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/SmritiManam

When do we use c'est and ce?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/LeighAnnNC

it did not accept career


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/TaylorGray444771

I dont know anyone who says "occupation"


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/VSCH76

"It's my occupation." Why not to translate as "This is my job".?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/LABEDZKI

I put " its my career." It was marked incorrect. "Career" and "occupation" mean the same, so I think my answer should be accepted.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/LickSkillet

So, I forgot what métier meant. When I tranlated "C'est mon métier" as "it's my métier", it accepted it. I didn't know what métier meant until i looked in these comments


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/DianaM
  • 1157

Well, aren't you lucky, then? Haha. And now you've learned some French and some English.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Calafia77

Also metier can mean business


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/PeterWhite195448

Un travail accepted then not accepted when occupation came up again


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/DianaM
  • 1157

It would need to be "mon" travail for this translation. Don't know if Duo is accepting it, as the meaning is a fair distance from "métier". There is an extensive and rather interesting discussion on this page about the shades of meaning in French and English of the different words we use for this.

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