Take care of vs look after

Necsus

Senior Member
Italian (Italy)
Sapete dirmi qual è la differenza/sfumatura di significato tra le due espressioni 'take care of' e 'look after'? Suppongo che ce ne sia una, perché in questa battuta (sempre trailer 'The Soloist') vengono dette tutte e due:

- I’m the closest thing to family he has. We take care of each other. And we look after each other. I’m his friend.

Forse prendersi cura e occuparsi? Ma siamo là...
Thanks!
 
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  • Wobby

    Senior Member
    English [England]
    Hmm... I'm struggling to think of a difference, except that 'take care of' is slightly more intimate than 'look after'. 'Look after' can suggest to keep someone from trouble, watching over them, attending to their basic needs such as hunger and shelter, as a sort of guardian. 'Take care of' perhaps has a more maternal feel to it in the sense of protection, love in certain contexts, and of course, care.

    For example, a mother may say to a babysitter regarding her baby "Look after him" to say 'make sure that he is OK for when I am gone'. A mother that has to leave her baby behind with her sister as she is leaving for a long time may say "Take care of him" to say 'love him and protect him as much as I would'. I guess a mother wouldn't be expectant of a babysitter to love her child, unless she is rather protective, in which case she would say "Take care of him" to the babysitter too.

    But this is just my interpretation of the expressions in trying to distinguish them... possibly others may have other ideas. Though in your context of two friends, they are rather similar... :)
     

    Salbina

    Senior Member
    US
    Italiano
    Ho l'impressione che "take care of" significhi in generale "prendersi cura, tenere a qualcuno" e che invece "look after" sia più qualcosa di simile a "guardarsi le spalle, proteggersi a vicenda, badare a qualcuno", in un senso meno affettivo e più pratico, può essere?
     

    della_malo

    Member
    nyc
    usa- english
    I agree with Wobby + Salbina...it's hard for me to come up with a real difference between the two. Like S said, "to look after" gives a sense of protecting someone; as an older brother would keep an eye on his little brother.

    I think in this case they used both just to reinforce the meaning.

    Some other common twists on these phrases are
    -to watch out for someone
    -to look outfor someone
     

    shardaneng

    Senior Member
    italian
    Salve a tutti.
    Se io dovessi dire "mi occupo di un magazzino" (nel senso di bado e gestisco un magazzino) sarebbe giusto usare una o tutte e due queste espressioni "I look after/take care a warehouse!"o esiste qualche espressione o verbo più consono?
     

    You little ripper!

    Senior Member
    Australian English
    Salve a tutti.
    Se io dovessi dire "mi occupo di un magazzino" (nel senso di bado e gestisco un magazzino) sarebbe giusto usare una o tutte e due queste espressioni "I look after/take care a warehouse!"o esiste qualche espressione o verbo più consono?
    I manage a warehouse might fit better here.
     

    Odysseus54

    Mod huc mod illuc
    Italian - Marche
    "Manage" is more specific, if that is what you do. It means that you "take care" of a lot of things, from maintenance, to personnel, to traffic in and out, security, utility bills etc.

    If you say "I take care of a warehouse" it could just mean that you are the cleaning person, or that you work there in an unspecified capacity.

    If you are looking for a precise translation of the Italian "mi occupo" ( as a euphemism for "I work with, at, in the field of" ) I don't think there is one.
     

    You little ripper!

    Senior Member
    Australian English
    Unless the context suggested otherwise, if someone told me that they were "taking care" or "looking after" a warehouse, my first thought would be that they were concerned with its security in some way, either as a security guard on the premises, or at the security control centre it was connected to.
     
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