sans enfant

FBC

Senior Member
French
Bonjour à tous!

J'ai trouvé que l'expression "sans enfant" se dit "childless".

Mais est-il correct d'employer "no kid(s)" or "no child(ren)"?

Dans un CV, "32 ans, mariée, sans enfant" devient "32 years old, married, no kids"?

Merci d'avance de votre aide,

FBC
 
  • Kelly B

    Curmodgeratrice
    USA English
    No kids is suitable for an advertisement on a dating site or in a newspaper, but too informal for a CV, I think; no children would be my choice. Childless, to me, carries the nuance that the lack is regrettable or sad.

    I would not include that information in a CV/resume for the US job market. I'm not sure whether it is appropriate in the UK.

    Edit: wow, I'm slow.
     
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    friasc

    Senior Member
    English (USA)
    A couple years ago, I watched a French comedy, "les 2 Alfred", about a startup company that won't hire workers with children:

    "Ici, c'est no child. Quand on a des enfants, on se tire de la boîte, c'est la philosophie de la maison."

    While I was watching the movie, I was convinced that the singular in "no child" this was a mistranslation of "sans enfant". Thinking it over now, I'm no longer so sure. Let's say I don't want any children at my party, my event, my business, etc. I think I would use the plural: "no children (allowed)". To me, the singular would imply an emphatic and rigorous negation (no child = zero children, not one single child), such as in the famous "No Child Left Behind" act passed in the US, which one could translate as "pas un seul enfant laissé pour compte". However, in the context of a workplace, I would probably use "childless", or "childfree" if I wanted to give it a positive or humorous spin.

    I wonder what you think. Is "no child" proper English? Do you agree that it is a mistranslation of "sans enfant" in the movie dialogue I mentioned?
     
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    Ellieanne

    Senior Member
    British English, South East
    I wonder what you think. Is "no child" proper English? Do you agree that it is a mistranslation of "sans enfant" in the movie dialogue I mentioned?
    For me, “no child” in this context doesn’t work. I would say “no children” or as you say, for humour “child free environment/work space”.

    Of course, for your other reference “No Child Left Behind”, the singular is fine.
     

    friasc

    Senior Member
    English (USA)
    I hope this doesn't venture too far from the original question, but wildan1's reply left me wondering whether it is even possible, in the context of a CV, to translate "sans enfant" into English. Like many Americans, I was surprised to learn that French CVs often include personals details (birth date, place of origin, marital status, children, photo, even personal interests) that would be totally out of place in an American CV. When I asked about this, I was told that while there is no legal obligation to provide such information, not including some personal details would seem unusual and hurt my chances of being taken. Maybe this isn't true in all sectors of the French job market. Nonetheless, the fact that a mainstream comedy deals with a hiring policy opposed to workers with children suggests to me that such a situation would be less farfetched in France than in the US. At the very least, a French audience would accept such a premise for a comic film. I have a hard time imagining such a movie being made in the US. At any rate, I think the original question involves a cultural element which makes it difficult to translate "sans enfant".
     

    Locape

    Senior Member
    French
    Mentioning that you have kids is optional in France, most of the time it is not recommended, unless it's useful for you. But it’s illegal for a company to ask you if you have kids.
    Votre situation familiale fait partie des informations de votre état-civil et, par conséquent, ne fait pas partie des éléments que vous êtes tenu d’indiquer sur votre curriculum vitae. En effet, le CV a pour but de renseigner recruteurs et employeurs sur votre capacité à occuper un poste en particulier, ce sur quoi le fait d’avoir des enfants n’a aucune incidence.
    enfants et CV

    I haven't seen this movie, it's obviously a comedy with a lot of exaggeration, from the reviews I've read. What's funny is that I'm pretty sure they invented what they thought was a typical American startup, and then took the caricature as far as they could, at the same time denouncing the uberization of the society.
    I'm not sure they knew or even checked if this was illegal in the US. So this is a farce, this situation would be impossible in France too, but I guess some French people may imagine an American startup with such demands.
     
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    ain'ttranslationfun?

    Senior Member
    US English
    In the fairly recent past, companies with sexist hiring policies would reject women candidates on the pretext that (if single) "She's going to get married and have children and quit..." or if they were married "She's going to quit after she has children..." "...so there's no use hiring and paying to train her." This is of course now (officially, wink, wink) illegal.* "I suppose it's not impossible that there may be a very few jobs for which having dependents might be somewhat problematic... but wouldn't this be equally true for men and women?
    *in most 'Western'(-style) countries.
     

    ain'ttranslationfun?

    Senior Member
    US English
    "children" usually refers to minors, but one can have grown (adult) children who are up to 25/26 years old and living at home (usually graduate students) who are "adult dependent children". As some people have adult siblings or parents who are handicapped and incapable of living on their own in their household, "dependents" is sometimes used in this context, but perhaps more for filling out (e.g.) tax forms and claims for subsidies than in CVs.
     
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