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bouger les lignes

English translation: smash down the barriers, bring down the barriers, push the boundaries

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GLOSSARY ENTRY (DERIVED FROM QUESTION BELOW)
French term or phrase:bouger les lignes
English translation:smash down the barriers, bring down the barriers, push the boundaries
Entered by: Karen Tucker
Options:
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11:13 Oct 24, 2006
French to English translations [PRO]
Social Sciences - Sports / Fitness / Recreation / non-profit organization
French term or phrase: bouger les lignes
I understand the general meaning of this but am having trouble coming up with a good expression in English. This is about a non-profit organization started by a former tennis star. The organization has sites throughout the country where children can play tennis for free and receive free lessons.

Les sports ne sont la propriété de personne. Certains sont juste inaccessibles pour les plus démunis. Le tennis en est un. Et ce constat l'a toujours révolté. Qui, depuis dix ans, nourrit un vieux rêve : donner les moyens à un jeune espoir issu des banlieues de gagner Roland-Garros. Allez, disons, en 2015 !

Il n’a jamais oublié sa rencontre avec Arthur Ashe, première icône noir américaine du tennis. Il est surtout en colère devant l’inertie de nos sociétés pour **faire bouger les lignes.**
Karen Tucker
United States
Local time: 17:05
move the goalposts
Explanation:
well we can all guess who this is, can't we?
I presume the idea was to use "lignes" in reference to tennis.
What you really need is a tennis image.
This is a sports image - the best I can think of for the moment...

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Note added at 5 mins (2006-10-24 11:19:22 GMT)
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smash down the barriers ???

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Note added at 3 hrs (2006-10-24 15:07:00 GMT)
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REDRAW THE LINES
Selected response from:

xxxCMJ_Trans
Local time: 23:05
Grading comment
You gave me such good suggestions, I had a hard time choosing. "Push the boundaries" sounded the most colloquial to me, but "bring down/smash down the barriers" sounded a little more apropos. I ended up using "smash down the barriers" to keep the tennis theme (though it was new to me; I don't know much about tennis). Thanks very much to everyone.
4 KudoZ points were awarded for this answer

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Summary of answers provided
3 +4move the goalpostsxxxCMJ_Trans
4 +2bring down the barriers
Carol Gullidge
4 +2to push the boundariesCarlos Segura
3cross the linesTerry Richards


  

Answers


7 mins   confidence: Answerer confidence 4/5Answerer confidence 4/5 peer agreement (net): +2
to push the boundaries


Explanation:
To go beyond the limits imposed.

Carlos Segura
United Kingdom
Local time: 22:05
Works in field
Native speaker of: Native in SpanishSpanish, Native in EnglishEnglish

Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
agree  French Foodie: this is what I was thinking as well
5 mins
  -> Many thanks.

agree  Ingeborg Gowans: excellent
1 hr
  -> Many thanks.
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20 mins   confidence: Answerer confidence 4/5Answerer confidence 4/5 peer agreement (net): +2
bring down the barriers


Explanation:
my first instinct was "move the goalposts", but this has the wrong implications (in spite of its obvious sporting connotations), as I feel the 'lignes' here are the social barriers: poverty and lack of opportunity, etc

Carol Gullidge
United Kingdom
Local time: 22:05
Native speaker of: Native in EnglishEnglish
PRO pts in category: 16

Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
agree  Sharon Das: this is it
42 mins
  -> thanks, Sharon!

agree  Marc Glinert: I would go with this one
50 mins
  -> thankyou, Marc!
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51 mins   confidence: Answerer confidence 3/5Answerer confidence 3/5
cross the lines


Explanation:
Not a direct translation but [partly] keeps the tennis metaphor

Terry Richards
France
Local time: 23:05
Native speaker of: Native in EnglishEnglish
PRO pts in category: 8

Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
neutral  Marc Glinert: keeps the sport imagery, but the meaning is not quite there
20 mins
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4 mins   confidence: Answerer confidence 3/5Answerer confidence 3/5 peer agreement (net): +4
move the goalposts


Explanation:
well we can all guess who this is, can't we?
I presume the idea was to use "lignes" in reference to tennis.
What you really need is a tennis image.
This is a sports image - the best I can think of for the moment...

--------------------------------------------------
Note added at 5 mins (2006-10-24 11:19:22 GMT)
--------------------------------------------------

smash down the barriers ???

--------------------------------------------------
Note added at 3 hrs (2006-10-24 15:07:00 GMT)
--------------------------------------------------

REDRAW THE LINES

xxxCMJ_Trans
Local time: 23:05
Native speaker of: Native in EnglishEnglish
PRO pts in category: 71
Grading comment
You gave me such good suggestions, I had a hard time choosing. "Push the boundaries" sounded the most colloquial to me, but "bring down/smash down the barriers" sounded a little more apropos. I ended up using "smash down the barriers" to keep the tennis theme (though it was new to me; I don't know much about tennis). Thanks very much to everyone.

Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
agree  Claire Cox: Yes, I like the tennis link with your "smash down the barriers"
8 mins

agree  French Foodie: agree with Claire's comment
34 mins

neutral  Terry Richards: Moving the goalposts is rather a negative image.
45 mins

agree  Cervin: I lioke the idea of 'smash down the barriers'
1 hr

agree  Jennifer White: an overworked cliché but OK here
4 hrs
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