Payer les pots cassés

Today’s entry is by guest blogger Esther Montgomery, a student in my AP French class. Merci, Esther.

The scandal that is Dominique Strauss-Kahn has unfolded across the world. By being such a prominent man in French society and allegedly sexually assaulting a maid in a New York hotel, DSK managed to seriously offend two very powerful nations. That’s in addition to all the press he received in many other countries across the globe. The former International Monetary Chief now faces a court hearing on March 28 in which the maid he is said to have assaulted (he says she consented; she disagrees) is hoping to make a large financial gain. Other than the great financial price he may pay, the criminal charges have been dropped. DSK has severely damaged his reputation with this “little mishap”; sexual assault does not go over lightly with anyone.

The literal meaning of the expression, payer les pots cassés (peyey ley poh kasay) is “to pay for the broken pots”. The meaning of how the French actually use this expression is not far from its literal meaning; payer les pots cassés expresses the concept of one repairing, or paying for, the damages one has made. Dominique Strauss-Kahn has lost the respect of his coworkers, peers, and a vast amount of French and American civilians. Rebuilding a reputation is not easy and DSK has a long way to go.

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About Patricia Gilbert

Patricia Gilbert is a French teacher. She's Canadian, lives in the United States, but dreams of living in France. Follow her on Instagram @Onequalitythefinest and on Twitter @1qualthefinest.
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2 Responses to Payer les pots cassés

  1. Francois says:

    With the latest scandal of his involvement in a prostitution ring in Lille, I doubt (and hope) he will ever recover a shred of his reputation.

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