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wildcard nature of the goddess's gift echoes

English translation: unpredictable

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16:59 Feb 8, 2007
English to English translations [PRO]
Art/Literary - Philosophy
English term or phrase: wildcard nature of the goddess's gift echoes
The sentence is:
For many cultures there has always been the perspective that children were a gift rather than a right, and while such feelings may have little currency in our current culture, perhaps the wildcard nature of the goddess's gift echoes the essential randomness of reproduction.

What does the last part "the wildcard nature of the goddess's gift echoes the essential randomness of reproduction" mean?
Kaysha
Canada
English translation:unpredictable
Explanation:
wildcard usually means random or unpredictable.
the goddess's gifts are children
Therefore, the phrase means that the there is no guarantee that you will produce children and that the chances of doing so are as unpredictable as the natures of any children produced.
Selected response from:

kmtext
United Kingdom
Local time: 08:04
Grading comment
Thanks so much! I translated it just as you rephrased it for me.
4 KudoZ points were awarded for this answer

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Summary of answers provided
4 +8unpredictablekmtext
4 +4explanation
Craig Meulen


Discussion entries: 1





  

Answers


14 mins   confidence: Answerer confidence 4/5Answerer confidence 4/5 peer agreement (net): +8
unpredictable


Explanation:
wildcard usually means random or unpredictable.
the goddess's gifts are children
Therefore, the phrase means that the there is no guarantee that you will produce children and that the chances of doing so are as unpredictable as the natures of any children produced.

kmtext
United Kingdom
Local time: 08:04
Native speaker of: Native in EnglishEnglish, Native in GaelicGaelic
PRO pts in category: 4
Grading comment
Thanks so much! I translated it just as you rephrased it for me.

Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
agree  Jacqueline McClure-Zerbe
2 mins
  -> Mòran Taing

agree  Anton Baer: Fastest correct answer
42 mins
  -> Mòran Taing

agree  Jack Doughty
43 mins
  -> Mòran Taing

agree  David Moore
45 mins
  -> Mòran Taing

agree  Vicky Papaprodromou
1 hr
  -> Mòran Taing

agree  xxxAlfa Trans
2 hrs
  -> Mòran Taing

agree  Inge Dijkstra
3 hrs
  -> Mòran Taing

agree  Ioanna Karamanou
3 hrs
  -> Mòran Taing
Login to enter a peer comment (or grade)

1 hr   confidence: Answerer confidence 4/5Answerer confidence 4/5 peer agreement (net): +4
explanation


Explanation:
The second part of the sentence refers to the first part (gift), so to explain it we need to explain the whole idea.

In modern technological cultures, it is common to believe that having a child is a "right" - and we have modern technologies (fertility treatment) to help everyone have a child / exercise this right.

In other cultures, the birth of a child was seen as a "gift from the goddess" - not a right that everyone should have, but a gift. The author writes that reproduction has an "essential randomness" - if you have intercourse, maybe the woman will get pregnant, maybe not - it's random - and the outcome (healthy child / unhealthy, colour of hair etc) is also random. In our modern technological cultures, we are trying to overcome this randomness and make childbirth / reproduction predictable - happens only when we want it, always produces a healthy child, even with possibilities in the near future of genetic selection.

(When you are playing cards, a "wildcard" is a card that does not fit into the normal pattern of the cards - it is wild and if you get one - a gift - it is often a very big advantage for you in the game.)





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Note added at 23 hrs (2007-02-09 16:47:05 GMT) Post-grading
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//post-grading comment - response//

I'm really not too worried about points, but I don't understand the comments from the asker and Susan - this is the English-English list, so why should I give a translation?

The asker wrote "What does ... mean?" - not "Please re-phrase this for me."

And whatever language you are translating into, it is helpful for you to have full comprehension, and then you can choose a sentence in the target language to match the original. If you literally translate a simplified re-phrasal, you run the danger of losing some meaning.



Craig Meulen
United Kingdom
Local time: 08:04
Works in field
Native speaker of: Native in EnglishEnglish
Notes to answerer
Asker: Thanks so much, real fantastic explanation; however it did leave me with the problem of how to translate the sentence for which I found the other answer helpful. Too bad I cant give points to both..

Asker: Hello Craig, your explanation helped a lot in gaining an overall understanding. The explanations of the key words were also very helpful, the only thing lacking was the final conclusion to what the sentence meant. (ie. stringing the key words together which I tried but still found difficult). You are right, I was not necessarily asking for a rephrasing.


Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
agree  Paula Vaz-Carreiro: Your explanation is the most complete so I have withdrawn mine
52 mins
  -> thanks, I'm honoured

agree  Nesrin: Great explanation!
2 hrs
  -> thanks

agree  Ioanna Karamanou
2 hrs
  -> thanks

agree  humbird: Good explanation! However you need to come up with precise expression asker is seeking.
2 hrs
  -> thanks for the agree, please see my added comment
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Changes made by editors
Feb 8, 2007 - Changes made by Steffen Walter:
LevelNon-PRO » PRO
Field (specific)Idioms / Maxims / Sayings » Philosophy


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