I was reading the lyrics from All alone with you by EGOIST, helping myself with translations to learn some japanese, but there's something that confuses me. When it says

ねえ 人は強いって
Do you agree?

some places translate it with

Lord in Heaven, pretentious people say
Hey, it's a total lie
That people are strong
Do you agree?

while others with

Dear God, those who are pretentious say
that people are strong
But that’s a lie
Do you agree?

From the other lyrics I'd say the second one is more appropriate, but I want to really understand how the sentence is constructed. So I'm wondering, in "人が言うの ねえ 人は強いって そんなの嘘だよ" does the って mean it's the end of the quoted text (meaning pretentious people say "people are strong" period, and it's the singer saying "that's a lie") or is it to say "the fact that people are strong", and そんなの嘘だよ is still in the quoted text, meaning that people say "the fact that people are strong, that's a total lie"?

1 Answer 1


Let me put a more correct-ish translation first:

神さま気取りの人が言うの/ねえ 人は強いって
You know, those who think they're gods say: "people are strong"

No, I don't believe it

Do you agree?

Now for your question, I'm very sure that そんなの嘘だよ is another sentence. Putting the quoted speech after the main verb (anastrophe) is frequently heard in conversation. In that case, the closing quotative particle is either never put, put once at the quote's end, or put at the end of each chunk. In order for そんなの嘘だよ possibly to be a part of the quote, it has to take either of the following forms:

  • 人は強い/そんなの嘘だよ
  • 人は強い/そんなの嘘だよって
  • 人は強いって/そんなの嘘だよって

In the original lines, the particle is only put after 強い, then it's clear that the quote ends there.


BTW both translations you found seem to fail to interpret 気取り. It rarely stand as an independent word today, but mostly as a suffix to mean "feeling/acting as if X", and often translates into "X wannabe". Also ねえ may seem out of place, but as it is an interjection to make sure somebody hears you, it can be inserted anywhere in the sentence in theory.

  • It all makes sense, but are you sure that "神さま" there is a part of the 気取り construct? It really sounded as a vocative from the way the singer says it, especially if you see the previous verse (I could edit the question with it if you want, but it really sounds as if the person is talking to this 神さま... )
    – memememe
    Commented Nov 11, 2019 at 12:03
  • The 1st verse is "神さま どこへ行ってしまったの ねえ 返事はなくて いつだってそうだよ Are you still here?"
    – memememe
    Commented Nov 11, 2019 at 12:03
  • @memememe I'm afraid the 神さま気取り isn't a problem of nuances or contextual interpretation, but something nearly impossible to separate, unless it's a dialectal usage I don't know... I listened to the song, and it seemed to me just that the singer took a longer breath between them. Commented Nov 11, 2019 at 18:55
  • What about the verse I put in the comments? Could it be "those who think they're gods" in the second one and a vocative "God" in the first one?
    – memememe
    Commented Nov 11, 2019 at 23:49
  • 1
    @memememe Yes. Several Japanese lyric sites I've searched all insert a space after the first 神さま and not the second. I think that's the difference. Commented Nov 12, 2019 at 1:07

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