Grammar Info
N2 Lesson 7: 6/21

that means, that is to say

Phrase + ということ + Phrase
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使用域 一般
ということは is a phrase in Japanese that often appears in the middle of sentences, expressing that the previous statement is something that is about to be clarified. This can be translated as ‘that means’, or ‘that is to say’. ということは based sentences will often finish with ということだ, although it is not limited to appearing this way.
The more literal translation is something similar ‘that which is said to be (A), (B)’. In this way, it simply presents (A) as a thing that requires further explaining.
  • あの有名(ゆうめい)なIT企業(きぎょう)で働(はたら)いているということは、結構(けっこう)いい大学(だいがく)を出(で)たってこと?
    You work at a very famous IT company. That means that you graduated from a pretty good university, right?
  • 彼女(かのじょ)から返事(へんじ)が来(こ)ないということは、今(いま)は忙(いそが)しいということだろう。
    The fact that she hasn't responded to me means that she is probably busy at the moment.
  • 日本語(にほん)を上手(じょうず)に話(はな)せるということは、日本(にほん)に長(なが)い間(あいだ)住(す)んでいたということですか。
    You can speak Japanese well. Does that mean that you have lived in Japan for a long time?
Additionally, ということは will appear at the beginning of sentences, when the speaker is confirming their understanding about something that has just been said. Often in the form of a question. In these cases, the translation is similar ‘so you mean to say that (A)?’.
  • もう仕事(しごと)終(お)わったの?ということは、今日(きょう)こそは一緒(いっしょ)に晩御飯(ばんごはん)が食(た)べれるということだね!
    You are already done with work!? That means that we can finally eat dinner together today!
  • 妊娠(にんしん)したの!?ということは、私(わたし)はおばあちゃんになるってこと?!
    You are pregnant!? Does that mean that I am going to be a grandma?!
As can be seen from the breakdown of という, こと, and は, this statement just expresses that the ‘thing’ which is ‘classified as’ (A) is ‘in general’ understood to be (B).
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He is going on a trip by himself. That is to say, he has become an adult.
Today is a national holiday. Does that mean that that supermarket is closed?
Did you buy that desk at IKEA? Does that mean that you put it together yourself?

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