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What is the capital of Tunisia?

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What is the capital of Tunisia?

What is a “Calque de l’anglais”?

Calque de l’anglais means a poor translation from English, where one has been mistaken by false friends, such as apply for a job translated to appliquer pour un travail instead of postuler pour un travail.

Papier calque” is “tracing paper“. It’s an analogy to talk about the fact you’ve done a litteral translation of the word “apply“.

It just doesn’t work for a job application. “Appliquer” means “apply” in the “put something onto something else” sense. I’m not talking of “s’appliquer” which is completely different.

(I would also say “laveur de vaisselle” instead of “lave-vaisselle“, which is the machine.)

Literally, a calque is a reproduction, a tracing. In particular, (papier) calque is tracing paper. In linguistics, a calque is, well, a calque: a word-for-word translation of a phrase or a translation of words based on superficial resemblance rather than meaning. “Cette formulation est un calque de l’anglais” means “this formulation is a literal translation (a calque) of the English phrasing”. Here, it is meant negatively; this is usually, but not always, the case.

In this case, the English word apply can sometimes be translated to appliquer, and the two share a common root, but the word appliquer cannot be used in the sense of applying for a job. Postuler or candidater (or other formulations such as faire acte de candidature — which sounds really posh for a dishwasher’s job) are the usual terms.

This isn’t the only mistake in your proposed sentence. “My name is Zolani” should be “Je m’appelle Zolani”. A lave-vaisselle is a machine to wash dishes; the job is plongeur (meaning B). To wash dishes in a restaurant is colloquially called “faire la plonge”.

(Note: I’m French from France; what’s wrong and incomprehensible for me may be correct in Québec, but I don’t think this sentence would be said differently in Québec.)


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What is the capital of Tunisia?