Aug 1, 2009


I have already learned about Sotomayor from a VOA's special English program. But, I could not understand the following sentence included in it completely. "I would hope that a wise Latina woman with the richness of her experiences would more often than not reach a better conclusion than a white male who hasn't lived that life." It is not easy to understand this part because of "doubled negative expression", I think.

But, this time, I have found this article in Asahi newspaper and I confirmed that the meaning I got from it is correct. However, another question has left in my mind. Why did she use these expression? I think that she should say that "a person with a good experience would reach a good conclusion, regardless of his, or her race and sex".


Mike said...

The sentence is confusing because of the phrase "more often than not." The phrase "more often than not" is an idiom. It functions like an adverb. It means "usually".

Sotomayor's statement shows how we Americans see ourselves. Women and non-white Americans often believe that their lives are more challenging and difficult than the lives of white men. They often believe that success is harder to achieve as a woman or a minority. This is probably true.

But, a judge is supposed to treat all people equally. That is why her comment was controversial.

bikenglish said...


Thank you for good explanation about "more often than not". I could understand the meaning of the sentence because of your kind explanation.