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"All walks of life" - OTHER than referring to class or profession

Posted by Smokey Stover on May 13, 2004

In Reply to: "All walks of life" - OTHER than referring to class or profession posted by MichaelFR on May 12, 2004

: : also mean simply "all fields/areas"? I've come across what appears to be this meaning in a book I'm translating, and I want to make sure I'm not misunderstanding it. Many thanks.

: Here is what you find online in the Cambridge American Dictionary:
: "When people talk about walks of life, they are referring to different levels of social position or achievement"

It is possible that I have been deluding myself for all these years, but I've always taken the phrase "all walks of life" to mean the various paths which people of all sorts have taken in the course of their lives, with different social and income levels being a secondary effect of having taken different paths. All walks of life certainly implies the high and the low and everything in-between, but the emphasis is on inclusiveness and variety, not on class distinction as such. "All fields and areas" is closer to what the phrase means to most people than "different levels of social position or achievement." SS