https://www.duolingo.com/profile/fr224

Car vs. Parce que

I know that these words both mean because. Is there any difference in when to use them, or are they interchangeable?

June 14, 2015

29 Comments


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

About.com has a good page on this here:- http://french.about.com/od/grammar/a/conclusions.htm

The synopsis is:- + Parce que is a subordinating conjunction and can begin a sentence. Parce que introduces a cause, explanation, or motive - it explains why something is done. + Car is a coordinating conjunction, should not begin a sentence, and is mainly found in formal and written French. Car supports a judgment or indicates a reason.

What I got from that, including reading the examples they give, is that you can probably use "parce que" most of the time but it implies a direct cause and effect, "car" is also used for situations where the two clauses are related but one is not a direct result of the other necessarily.

June 15, 2015

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

Good explanation and research ! And a lingot from me to say thanks !

June 16, 2015

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

They are interchangeable, but, car is a bit more formal. (i.e. using parce que in formal situations might be a little inappropriate)

June 14, 2015

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

As a native, I wouldn't say parce que might be inappropriate, you can use it in formal contexts without any hesitation! Car, however, sounds fancier, almost posh, so it's mostly used in writing rather than orally :)

June 14, 2015

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

Okay, thanks for the correction! But they aren't quite the same :)

June 14, 2015

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

No, they're not exactly the same, you were perfectly right on that point! It was more a precision than a correction :)

June 14, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/fr224

Thank you.

June 14, 2015

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

And just to stir the pot a bit - how does puisque fit into all this? I think it is rather like 'as' or 'since' but can also be translated as 'because'.

The Francis Cabrel song "L'encre de tes yeux" opens with the line "Puisqu'on ne vivra jamais tous les deux"

'As we will never live together'

June 16, 2015

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

Oh Gavier, I knew you were really " Le Chef" ... ;) . Thank for stirring the pot ;)

June 16, 2015

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

Bien sûr! Il y a toujours quelque chose de delicieux dans la marmite. Mais fais attention de ne pas tomber dedans (comme Obélix)

June 17, 2015

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

LOL ... Où est le Vegimite? ... En Australie, nous mangeons le vegimite. ;) Nos cousins à l'est - La Nouvelle-Zélande. - ils ont la marmite. Je suis triste pour Obélix ...

June 17, 2015

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

You know that marmite means "cauldron"? I only know because I've read a lot of Astérix books and the word always amuses me because well - English Marmite...Tomber dans La Marmite - ça ne serait pas très agréable! ;-)

Vegemite - J'en ai essayé - Ce n'est pas trop mal mais ce n'est pas la meme chose! Un peu caramélisé?

June 17, 2015

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

Oh you are an AMAZING gem again - I do remember reading that somewhere - now hopefully I will now actually remember it ! So in England - you have Marmite ?

June 17, 2015

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

Yep, Marmite - Famous for strongly polarising opinion. Me - I'll eat it out of the jar! ;-)

June 17, 2015

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

Très collante. pour la marmite et le vegimite ! Et piquante ainsi!

June 17, 2015

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

OMG - I wouldn't ! You would fit in well though here in Australia ;)

June 17, 2015

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

I heard somewhere that 'car' is not used at the beginning of a sentence, is it true?

June 14, 2015

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

It confuses me as well, but from what I understand, it is mostly the same, with some nuances. It seems that most French speakers can't tell the difference either. 'Car' is formal and used in written French, but rarely in spoken French. '

You can start a sentence with 'parce que' but not 'car'. 'Parce que' can introduce a statement. 'Car' supports the reasoning behind a previous statement, connecting two parts of the sentence by developing upon the first. It can be used as a justification, rather than a direct cause. They say that you can also think of 'car' as "for' - in English.

"I didn't come to your party, for I was sleepy." (My sleepiness is a justification for not having been present.) versus "I was not at your party because I was tired." (The cause of my absence was my sleepiness.)

June 15, 2015

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

Thank you! :)

By the way, I really like using 'for' instead of 'because'...

I don't know, it sounds cool lol.

June 15, 2015

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

I believe they're interchangeable :)

June 14, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/fr224

Thank you.

June 14, 2015

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

De rien ^^

June 14, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/-TashaJ-

They are interchangeable :)

June 14, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/parapluie41

Not quite. Parce que can be used to start a sentence and car cannot.

June 18, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/-TashaJ-

Oh yeah, forgot about that xD Thanks!

June 19, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/fr224

Thank you.

June 14, 2015

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

I was taught "parce que" in school years ago. My penpal always used "car" in her letters.

June 14, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/LuisGol001

These messages are old but I finally know how to use Car vs parce.

January 2, 2018

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

thanks, this helped

December 28, 2017
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