Can the verb adresser be used in the sense of the pair adress (en)/aborder(fr) as follows:

address the issue

aborder la question/le problème


Is adresser a false cognate in this context?


A dictionary definition: to think about a problem or situation and decide how you are going to deal with it;

example of use: Your essay does not address the real issues.

This example shows that there is something more in the concept than simply the idea of an approach to a question or problem. It involves the task of considering a solution, showing its feasibility, etc. Therefore, a translation such as "traiter" is more what you would expect. The translation of the above example as

"Vous ne traitez pas les questions réelles."

appears to correspond rather well.

If instead we use the verb "approcher", we have "Vous n'approchez pas les bonnes questions/questions réelles."; it seems that sort of activity is not quite what essay writing is about, but that it is only an "ingredient" in it, that which constitutes how the author treats the question.

I can't find "false cognates" but apparently you can say "false friends" or "deceptive cognates"; they are synonymous phrases. True, in this context the two words are deceptive cognates.

  • Thanks. So adresser in this context is but a false cognate? – dimitris Nov 24 '18 at 11:41
  • @dimitris I think I understand what you mean but I don't know the term "false cognate", apparently a technical term in linguistics, so i'll have to check up on that before I can be more assertive. – LPH Nov 24 '18 at 11:46
  • Faux-amis en français. – dimitris Nov 24 '18 at 11:48
  • Like pain, main etc. – dimitris Nov 24 '18 at 11:56
  • @dimitris « Vater » and « father » are cognates; « Haus » and « house » are cognates; I find the translation "deceptive cognate" for "faux-amis". – LPH Nov 24 '18 at 12:03

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