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Context: a martial arts master is talking (offensively, I think) about one of his students:

たばこを栽培する山から降りて来たサルですよ。うちの武術学校にスカウトされたからと身分をわきまえず李【り】と組んで演武を狂わす厄介者なんです。

What is the meaning of 身分をわきまえず? I found on Kenkyusha dictionary the following example:

身分をわきまえる know one's place

but I don't think it fits the context. Maybe here it simply means "without discriminating him for his social position"? Here you can see the whole page. Thank you for your help!

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「うちの武術学校{ぶじゅつがっこう}にスカウトされたからと身分{みぶん}をわきまえず​李 {り}​と組{く}んで演武{えんぶ}を狂{くる}わす厄介者{やっかいもの}なんです。」

To use punctuations for you, which manga will never do:

「うちの武術学校にスカウトされたからと、身分をわきまえず​(、)李​と組んで演武を狂わす厄介者なんです。」

「身分をわきまえず​」=「身分をわきまえないで

The part of your question that worries me the most is where you said:

"Maybe here it simply means "without discriminating him for his social position"? "

which suggests that you are not reading the grammar of this sentence properly.

The person who does the 「身分をわきまえ」 is the "new monkey guy" himself. It is not something another person is doing to him. Are you following me? No one is discriminating against someone else here.

「身分をわきまえ」, in this context, means "not knowing his limits", "overreaching himself", etc. In other words, the definition that you found in the dictionary is valid -- "not knowing one's place". 「ず」 is negative if anyone is unfamiliar with it.

My own quick TL:

"Just because he was scouted by our martial arts school, he is a nuisanse who overreaches himself by teaming up with Lee and ends up disturbing the performances."

  • Thank you for your answer. Now that you told me that the subject is the monkey guy himself, I am confused by that 狙わす, why is it in the causative form? Also, could you explain if 身分をわきまえる can ever mean "to discriminate someone for his social position"? Thank you! – Marco Jul 27 at 11:00
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    @Marco It's not 狙わす but 狂わす ("to make things go wrong" → "to mess up"). 身分をわきまえる never has such a meaning. – naruto Jul 28 at 7:44

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