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emk
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 Message 345 of 1317
22 December 2012 at 9:17pm | IP Logged 
Thank you, DaraghM!

This afternoon I'm puzzling through incomprehensible sentences from Le Monde. I generally choose these because (a) something about them makes no sense, and (b) I've noticed some kind of recurring pattern. Here's a particularly weird one:

Quote:
Ainsi que l'écrit, fort directement, le rapport d'enquête sur le scandale Stapel, on ne peut "tirer d'autre conclusion que de dire que, de la base jusqu'au sommet, on a négligé les règles fondamentales de la science et les obligations méthodologiques".


My wife thought this was an especially ugly sentence, and she helped me figure out what was going on. First of all, ainsi que doesn't have its typical meaning of "as well as" here. Second, the subject le rapport and the verb écrit have been inverted.

This gives us:

Quote:
As the report of the investigation into the Stapel scandal wrote [it], one can't "draw any other conclusion than to say that, from the base to the summit, we have neglected the fundamental rules of science and the methodological obligations."


Digging around on WordReference, I found a slightly better example of this construction:

Quote:
Ainsi que l'avocat l'a constaté, il semble qu'il ne possédait pas d'objets de valeur.


And here's another example from Le Monde:

Quote:
Les chercheurs se sont également intéressés à une momie aussi anonyme qu'étrange, celle de l'"homme E", qui se trouvait avec celle de Ramsès III et d'autres momies royales dans une cachette à l'abri des pilleurs de tombeaux. Il s'agit d'un homme jeune, âgé de 18 à 20 ans, ainsi que le montre l'étude de ses os.


Notice how the two examples from Le Monde have fairly complicated noun phrases as subjects, which is probably what's forcing an otherwise unnatural inversion. One you see the trick, it's everywhere, at least in Le Monde. So much of my intensive reading consists of little puzzles like this. If the answers are sufficiently obscure, I put them in Anki. When these cards "mature" in about 20 days, that first ugly example sentence will seem relatively natural, and I should be able to sight-read similar sentences without too much effort.

Oh, yeah—there's big one change in my studies recently. Up to a month ago I was reading novels and watching Buffy. But now I'm jumping wildly around websites and TV channels, which means that everything I do is unfamiliar. So I'm struggling a bit more, but that's a good sign.

Edited by emk on 22 December 2012 at 9:25pm

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kujichagulia
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 Message 346 of 1317
23 December 2012 at 12:16am | IP Logged 
emk wrote:
Oh, yeah—there's big one change in my studies recently. Up to a month ago I was reading novels and watching Buffy. But now I'm jumping wildly around websites and TV channels, which means that everything I do is unfamiliar. So I'm struggling a bit more, but that's a good sign.


Definitely a good sign. There's only so much Sarah Michelle Gellar one can take, my man.
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tarvos
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 Message 347 of 1317
23 December 2012 at 4:38pm | IP Logged 
I just took the time to listen to your French recording, emk, and your pronunciation is
quite good, although I am able to tell you are an anglophone learning French (it's the r
and the vowels that indeed, as you say, give it away). It sounds quite good otherwise!

I have uploaded something of my own to Soundcloud, but I really have no idea what my
accent sounds like to other people, so I am afraid I cannot give you any hints for
improvement, except to work on that "r". (I'm Dutch and I use that "r" as my standard
pronunciation, so I got lucky here.)
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geoffw
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 Message 348 of 1317
23 December 2012 at 7:06pm | IP Logged 
tarvos wrote:
I just took the time to listen to your French recording, emk, and your pronunciation is
quite good, although I am able to tell you are an anglophone learning French (it's the r
and the vowels that indeed, as you say, give it away). It sounds quite good otherwise!

I have uploaded something of my own to Soundcloud, but I really have no idea what my
accent sounds like to other people, so I am afraid I cannot give you any hints for
improvement, except to work on that "r". (I'm Dutch and I use that "r" as my standard
pronunciation, so I got lucky here.)


Ah! And you just upgraded your Swedish to Basic Fluency, yes? Gefeliciteerd!
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emk
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 Message 349 of 1317
23 December 2012 at 9:39pm | IP Logged 
Listening comprehension is weird. One moment, you understand everything. The next moment, it's a blur. Why does this happen?

The great thing about using movies with subs2srs is that you can isolate those hard parts and listen to them over and over. And when you do that, you'll quickly realize that some parts of the audio are just insanely difficult. Sometimes the actor mumbles, sometimes half the sounds are missing, sometimes the accent is weird, and so on.

Let me give you a sample. In the following recording, I introduce a clip from Amélie and then re-read it a lot more slowly:

Compréhension orale : un défi du film « Amélie »

Quote:
Aujourd'hui, j'ai un bon défi pour vous. C'est un enregistrement qui vient du film « Amélie ». Dans cette scène, un homme vient de trouver une boite de jouets qu'il a perdue pendant son enfance.

C'est un enregistrement incroyablement difficile !

Quote:
Quand on est gosse, le temps n'en finit pas de se traîner, et puis du jour au lendemain, on a comme ça cinquante ans.


Et maintenant, je vais le lire, vraiment plus lentement.


If I try to speak spontaneously to a microphone, I feel a little awkward, even if I'm using English. So I wrote this out and read it back. And if it makes you feel any better, this clip is harder than 90% of the dialog in the first 35 minutes of Amélie.
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tastyonions
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 Message 350 of 1317
23 December 2012 at 10:56pm | IP Logged 
^ Wow, that is *hard.* After seeing the text I can get the part after "puis" reasonably well, but everything before that is just a blur. The only thing I can decipher in that first half is "est gosse."

Edited by tastyonions on 23 December 2012 at 11:02pm

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tarvos
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 Message 351 of 1317
23 December 2012 at 10:59pm | IP Logged 
He mumbles and slurs a lot. With the text there I get all the words, though.
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geoffw
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 Message 352 of 1317
24 December 2012 at 1:23am | IP Logged 
It's *pretty much* all there, it sounds like (after multiple listens while looking at the text), except I'm still having a
hard time hearing "du jour au lendemain" as being there. I would guess that this is perhaps a fairly common
expression, such that one might be able to guess from context that this is what he's saying, given enough practice?

Good example.


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