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Improve Your French - Advanced Vocabulary - Vocabulary of Argumentation

Updated on June 16, 2012

Improving Your French

Think you know French? Think again.

French, like any language, is a language that can never be completely mastered because like all languages it evolves and changes to specific needs and events. However, one can certainly get close!

To aid you, here is some sophisticated vocabulary to do with argumentation that you may learn to improve upon an already solid French lexis.

"First of all"

Dans le fond
Dès l'abord à
From the outset
Réfléchissons d'abord à ...
Let us first consider ...
Il s'agit d'abord de se demander
We must first ask ourselves
La première question qui se pose est de savoir...
The first question is
À première vue
At first sight
Au premier abord; de prime abord
At first sight
Partons du principe que ...
Let us take as a basic principle that ...

"It's about"

Quant à ...
As for ...
En ce qui concerne ...
As far as ... is concerned
De quoi s'agit-il en fait?
What in fact is the issue?
Qu'est-ce qui est en cause?
What is at issue?
Ce qui est en cause, c'est ...
What is at issue is ...
Faire une mise au point de la situation
To clarify the position
Donner quelques précisions
To clarify a few details
Définir ce qu'on entend par ...
To define what one understands by ...
Analyser quelques enjeux
To analyse a few issues
La controverse porte sur ...
The argument involves ...


La crise
En crise
In a state of crisis
Une situation inquiétante
A worrying state of affairs
Avoir du mal à ...
To have difficulty in ...
Avoir de la peine à ...
To have difficulty in ...
Éprouver des difficultés à
To have difficulty in ...
Une question épineuse
An issue fraught with difficulty
Un problème incontournable
A problem which cannot be ignored
Le fond du problème
Basis of the problem
La principale difficulté porte sur ...
The main difficulty involves ...
Toute la difficulté est de ... (+ infinitive)
The main difficulty is to ...
Toute la difficulté réside en ... (+ noun)
The main difficulty is in ...
Le souci prédominant
Main worry
Un obstacle insurmontable
An insurmountable obstacle


French Word
English Translation
Tirer l'affaire au clair
To shed light on the matter
Saisir le fonds des enjeux
To grasp what is basically at stake
Cerner le problème essentiel
To define the main problem
à l'ordre du jour
On the agenda
Les tenants et les aboutissants
The ins and the outs
Faire le point sur l'affaire
To summarise the issue
Chercher un point de repère
To seek a point of reference
Ce dernier
The latter


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    • LongTimeMother profile image

      LongTimeMother 5 years ago from Australia

      Merci beaucoup!

    • Philanthropy2012 profile image

      DK 5 years ago from London

      @LTM :)

      Ahah, best of luck and I hope you enjoy your trip!

      Bonne chance et bon voyage mademoiselle!

    • LongTimeMother profile image

      LongTimeMother 5 years ago from Australia

      It is about 40 years since my French classes in school, yet I still remember enough basic French to read signs and have basic conversations when in Paris.

      I find the French are very forgiving when you at least make an effort. "Bonjour, je suis australien. Je parle du francais, un peu. J'ai étudié du français à l'école." I think when they see my grey hair they realise it has been a long time, so they laugh and speak english if they know it.

      You have inspired me to renew my study before I make my next trip, but I doubt I'll encounter un obstacle insurmontable. :)

    • Philanthropy2012 profile image

      DK 5 years ago from London

      No problem though the vocabulary certainly isn't basic!

    • ltlearning profile image

      ltlearning 5 years ago from Argentina

      Thank you for putting together this basic vocabulary for a French Learner.