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Vote with one’s feet

  • Vote with one’s feet is an idiom with an uncertain origin. An idiom is a commonly used word, group of words, or phrase that has a figurative meaning that is not easily deduced from its literal definition. Often using descriptive imagery or metaphors, common idioms are words and phrases used in the English language in order to convey a concise idea, and are often spoken or are considered informal or conversational. English idioms can illustrate emotion more quickly than a phrase that has a literal meaning, even when the etymology or origin of the idiomatic expression is lost. An idiom is a metaphorical figure of speech, and it is understood that it is not a use of literal language. Figures of speech like an often-used metaphor have definitions and connotations that go beyond the literal meaning of the words. Mastery of the turn of phrase of an idiom, which may use slang words or other parts of speech common in American slang or British slang, is essential for the English learner. Many English as a Second Language students do not understand idiomatic expressions and idiomatic language such as hit the sack, spill the beans, let the cat out of the bag, silver lining, back to the drawing board, barking up the wrong tree, kick the bucket, hit the nail on the head, face the music, under the weather, piece of cake, when pigs fly, and raining cats and dogs, because they attempt to translate them word for word, which yields only the literal meaning. English phrases that are idioms should not be taken literally. In addition to learning vocabulary and grammar, one must understand the phrasing of the figurative language of idiomatic phrases in order to know English like a native speaker; it is helpful to maintain a list of phrases, common expressions, colloquial terms, and popular expressions to memorize that are used figuratively or idiomatically. We will examine the meaning of the common idiom take a bath, where it came from, and some examples of its idiomatic usage in senten a bath is an idiom that has been in use for decades. An idiom is a commonly used word, group of words, or phrase that has a figurative meaning that is not easily deduced from its literal definition. Often using descriptive imagery or metaphors, common idioms are words and phrases used in the English language in order to convey a concise idea, and are often spoken or are considered informal or conversational. English idioms can illustrate emotion more quickly than a phrase that has a literal meaning, even when the etymology or origin of the idiomatic expression is lost. An idiom is a metaphorical figure of speech, and it is understood that it is not a use of literal language. Figures of speech like an often-used metaphor have definitions and connotations that go beyond the literal meaning of the words. Mastery of the turn of phrase of an idiom, which may use slang words or other parts of speech common in American slang or British slang, is essential for the English learner. Many English as a Second Language students do not understand idiomatic expressions and idiomatic language such as hit the sack, spill the beans, let the cat out of the bag, silver lining, back to the drawing board, barking up the wrong tree, kick the bucket, hit the nail on the head, face the music, under the weather, piece of cake, when pigs fly, and raining cats and dogs, because they attempt to translate them word for word, which yields only the literal meaning. English phrases that are idioms should not be taken literally. In addition to learning vocabulary and grammar, one must understand the phrasing of the figurative language of idiomatic phrases in order to know English like a native speaker; it is helpful to maintain a list of phrases, common expressions, colloquial terms, and popular expressions to memorize that are used figuratively or idiomatically. We will examine the meaning of the common idiom vote with one’s feet, where it came from, and some examples of its idiomatic usage in sentences.

     

    Vote with one’s feet means to attend or not attend something, depending on one’s approval of the event. Vote with one’s feet may also mean to belong or not belong to an organization or movement, depending on one’s approval of that organization or movement. The expression vote with one’s feet evokes the imagery of traveling by foot from one place to another. Vladimir Lenin is credited with coining the sentiment; supposedly, he used the term to describe the Russian army’s desertion of the Tsar. Many have quoted the term, invoking Lenin, but there is currently no evidence to support his authorship. The idiom vote with one’s feet became quite popular in English beginning in the 1960s. Related phrases are votes with one’s feet, voted with one’s feet, voting with one’s feet.

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    Examples

    Alternatively, you can look for an employer more comfortable with employees working remotely, and vote with your feet — out the door. (Anchorage Daily News)

    Second, choose your employer wisely – if it’s not a family-friendly workplace, then vote with your feet. (Economic Times)

    Sir Simon Rattle, who signed a letter calling Brexit a “self-built cultural jail” appears to have voted with his feet this week and announced he will leave the London Symphony Orchestra for a job in Germany. (Evening Standard)


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