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katie asked in Society & CultureLanguages · 9 years ago

Help me understand this structure in french, verb-t-il?

Pourquoi le personnage se comporte-t-il comme il le fait et comment représente-t-il la pensée de la société ?

I have to answer that question for a movie character for my french homework. I've never really understood that structure; can someone break it down for me? Why is "comporte-t-il" written the way it is? And, can someone help me translate this sentence? I somewhat understand it, but not enough to understand how to answer it. Thanks.

3 Answers

  • Anonymous
    9 years ago
    Favorite Answer

    The sentence means:

    "Why does the character (personnage means a character in film, live theatre or written fictional text) behave as he does and how does he represent the thought of society?"

    The third person singular subject pronoun, in your sentence "il", always sounds "t-il" in inversion. This means that if the verb ends in a vowel or, as in the case of all -er verbs, in a mute -e (as is the case with your verb se comporter), -t- must be inserted between the verb and the subject pronoun.

    If the verb ends in a -t or -d there is no need to insert an additional "t", since -t and -d are both pronounced "t" in liason.

    If a question begins with a question word such as pourquoi or comment as in your sentence, it may be formed either by placing est-ce que after the question word, or by using inversion after the subject noun, which is the way it has been done in your sentence.

    It could just as correctly have been written:

    Pourquoi est-ce que le personnage se comporte comme il le fait et comment est-ce qu'il représente la pensée de la société?

    Source(s): BA in French
  • 9 years ago

    The most common way to ask a question is to reverse the subject and verb. So to turn the statement "il comporte" into a question, you put "comporte" first and "il" second.

    But with the subjects that begin with a vowel (il, ils, elle, elles, on) you need a "t" or "d" sound before the subject when you flip them. If the verb doesn't end in "t" or "d", it has to be added. Even though "comporte" actually ends with a "t" SOUND, the rule applies. Apparently.

    I didn't know that last bit, and had to verify it.

    Edit: "Why does this person behave the way he does, and how does it represent the thought of society?"

  • 4 years ago

    because, and that i'll't keep in mind the time period used, the first one does no longer have an merchandise (it really is why they're using je suis alle) yet parler may have an merchandise. Gee I choose i might want to keep in mind the technical time period.

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