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Russian For Dummies [Kindle Edition]

Andrew Kaufman , Serafima Gettys
3.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (61 customer reviews)

Digital List Price: $24.99 What's this?
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Book Description

The fast and easy way to learn to speak Russian

With Russia in line to host the World Cup in 2018, the Winter Olympics in 2014, as well as a Formula 1 Grand Prix, interest in Russia is on the rise. Russian For Dummies is an excellent resource for students, tourists, and businesspeople looking for an introduction to this popular and complex language.

This updated edition offers new and improved content, more useful exercises and practice opportunities, all new content devoted to the Cyrillic alphabet, and much more.

  • A revamped, user-friendly organization
  • A fully updated and expanded audio CD with real-life conversations by native speakers
  • Expanded coverage of grammar, verb conjugations, and pronunciations
  • A refreshed and expanded mini-dictionary complete with even more essential vocabulary

Russian For Dummies provides basic instruction to those seeking to grasp the basics of conversational Russian. Students, travelers, and businesspeople with little or no language experience will gain a clearer understanding on how to communicate in Russian.



Editorial Reviews

From the Back Cover

Covers common expressions, conversations, and cultural notes

Your fun and friendly guide to communicating in Russian

Whether you're a student, a traveler, or a businessperson, or if you just want to speak basic Russian, you'll find this book packed with practical lessons and handy references — including coverage of written Russian, a Russian-English mini-dictionary, lists of vital verbs, and more!

Discover how to

  • Have everyday conversations in Russian
  • Make sense of Russian grammar
  • Improve your pronunciation
  • Get a handle on verb conjugations
  • Use idioms and popular expressions

About the Author

Andrew Kaufman, PhD, is currently a Visiting Lecturer in the Department of Slavic Languages and Literatures at the University of Virginia. He holds a PhD in Slavic Languages and Literatures from Stanford University, and he has recognized success as both a published scholar and an innovative, award-winning teacher of Russian language, literature, and culture at some of the country’s top universities. Dr. Kaufman has worked as a Russian language and literature expert for “Oprah’s Book Club,” he has discussed Russian literature and culture on the national television show Democracy Now!, and he has been heard as a featured guest on Talk America Radio and on Silver Rain Radio in Russia. A fluent speaker of Russian, Dr. Kaufman has lived extensively in Russia, where he studied at Moscow State University and also worked as an interpreter, translator, and management consultant. To learn more about Dr. Kaufman, please visit his website at www.professorandy.com.

Serafima Gettys, PhD, earned her doctorate degree in Foreign Language Education from Gertzen State Pedagogical University, Leningrad, USSR. She is currently a Coordinator of the Foreign Language Program at Lewis University, where she also teaches Russian. Prior to coming to Lewis University, she taught Russian at Stanford University. Gettys is also a member of a number of professional language associations.

Nina Wieda is a doctoral student in Slavic Languages and Literatures at Northwestern University in Chicago. She is committed to bringing Russian language and culture into the lives of her readers and students, because, as the Latin proverb goes, “With each new language, you live a new life.” A trained linguist with an MA in Social Sciences, Nina also has a book of poetry published in Russian, and a number of scholarly articles on Chekhov and contemporary drama published in English.


Product Details

  • File Size: 16418 KB
  • Print Length: 384 pages
  • Publisher: For Dummies; 2 edition (February 3, 2012)
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B007BV1LL8
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Lending: Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #152,744 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
27 of 27 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Lots of good info and fun read May 9, 2006
Format:Paperback
My wife and I bought the book for a trip we're taking to Europe this summer. We finished about half the book and like it. We tried some of the greetings and phrases on our Russian friends and they understood us, which is a good sign. Some of the grammar explanations are confusing in chapter 2, but the cultural tips and sayings throughout the book are really useful and the CD's great. Maybe the book could benefit from showing how words are spelled with actual Russian letters, which are shown in Chapter 1. Otherwise, we're enjoying it.
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22 of 22 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Ignore Any Review Published Before 2012 April 18, 2012
Format:Paperback|Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
Any review of RUSSIAN FOR DUMMIES written before the new edition of this book will probably mention that the book uses no Cyrillic, only transliteration, in writing out Russian words. This criticism is no longer applicable, because this new edition uses Cyrillic throughout. In fact, I think if Amazon wanted to do justice to the new edition, and give its customers real insight into this book, they'd remove all the old reviews from the web page of the 2nd edition, and leave them on the page for the 1st edition.

That said, if you are a student of the poetic and beautiful Russian language, RUSSIAN FOR DUMMIES is an excellent addition to your collection of reference works. As excellent as it is, it is not a book I would suggest to new students, or people who are just casually interested in learning a smattering of Russian for travel or business. If I were to recommend it for anyone, it would be for students in the 2nd or third year of study. The grammatical structure of Russian differs greatly from English in a number of very fundamental ways that a beginning student who has never encountered this type of grammar may find difficult to grasp. For example, the English language has only the vestigial remnants of a case system, while Russian has 7 different cases. This makes for a truckload of noun declensions. Unless you are already familiar with Russian, or another language that uses a case system, like German, the case system may represent a significant hurdle when first encountered cold.

I liked the dialogues cd. The native speakers had very nice, standard Russian accents, no funky pronunciations, like I've heard on other cds. That said, these dialogues are pretty complex for a beginning learner, and could easily put a student off.
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37 of 41 people found the following review helpful
Format:Paperback
Briefly, I find this book's CD very helpful. The conversations and corresponding scripts in the book assist well in pronunciation. As far as grammar and spelling....I don't want to learn how to spell Russian in transliteration, I want to learn how to spell it in Russian. The authors of this book made a decision to teach nothing in the Cyrillic alphabet, and this makes it confusing those who have already begun to study the language.

For beginners, who may feel they have already learned a lot at the end of this book, I can only imagine it would end up as a disappointment when they come across signs, menus, news articles, etc. in Cyrillic which they are unable to read.
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19 of 21 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great intro into Russian language and culture June 12, 2006
Format:Paperback
This is the first Dummies I've bought, and I thought it was really good. The author's kept it funny and light, but remained true to their purpose...to put together an easy to use guide to Russian language. Between the table of contents and the index, I could always quickly find the phrase or vocabulary list I was looking for. And, between the transliterations and audio CD, I know what I'm learning is authentic.
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17 of 19 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Thorough overview of Russian June 12, 2006
By Fyodo
Format:Paperback
As an expat banker living in Moscow, Russia, I picked up a copy of Russian for Dummies when I was in NYC just for kicks. The book is even better than some of the Russian language books I used in college for one simple reason: It's real, spoken Russian in a variety of actual everyday contexts, which I didn't have a clue about when I first came to Russia. If you're planning on living in Russia for extended periods of time, you'll want to learn the Cyrillic alphabet (which is a breeze, contrary to popular myth), but if you're just making a short trip or just want to get a thorough overview of the language the book is perfect.
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14 of 15 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great book, easy to understand July 24, 2006
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
We got this book to supplement some language tapes that we are using to learn conversational Russian. This book is great, because it helps explain rules of the language in very down to earth terms. It gives a lot of helpful tips in speaking and understanding Russian. A great resource.
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17 of 19 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars THE RUSSIAN BEAR COMES ALIVE June 12, 2006
By ChitraN
Format:Paperback
Russian for Dummies breaks all the stereotypes I've had about Russia--a gloomy, strange country with a language next to impossible to learn. The Russian langauge and culture really come alive in this extremely easy to use introductory book. And there are so many intriguing cultural references in this book that you could actually use it as a travel guide as much as a language guide. I didn't realize Russia could be such a fun (and funny) place! C
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11 of 12 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars You'll never read Russian with this July 11, 2006
Format:Paperback
I should've read more about this before purchase. Fortunately, it was well discounted, because the authors only give you a brief passing introduction to the Cyrillic alphabet (without even naming the letters).

If you went to Russia and got off the plane (or even look at a Russian website) with this as your introduction to the language, you'll be totally unprepared, as something as basic as "Information" will look utterly, well, Russian.

I do see some value in the cultural tips they give, but trying to deal with Russian using a latin alphabet is foolish in my opinion. The alphabet isn't hard to learn (as the authors acknowledge), so why skip out on that? It doesn't make sense.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Quick shipping and great book.
Published 5 days ago by Clara Znaty
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Just a must.
Published 23 days ago by CESAR MAYORAL FIGUEROA
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Great book.
Published 1 month ago by matteo angelin
5.0 out of 5 stars I love it
It was completely new. I will like to recommend to my other friends who want to brush up their Russian language. Read more
Published 4 months ago by Festus D.Adu
5.0 out of 5 stars Fun and easy to understand
Great book to start off learning Russian, it covers all the basics. Was not expecting all the cultural info but it's good that they included that in there.
Published 6 months ago by J. Yanez
2.0 out of 5 stars Compatibility problems
When this book does use the Cyrillic alphabet, the letters do not show up on tablet or iPad - it shows up as punctuation marks like ]] or \\ instead of Cyrillic. Read more
Published 7 months ago by C. E. Creager
5.0 out of 5 stars Great work!
I just want to thank everyone, for the exceptional job that was done. Excellent work , it is greatly appreciated.
Published 9 months ago by Denisse Ibarra
1.0 out of 5 stars Absolutely Worthless - DO NOT waste your money.
This book is absolutely worthless and will not help in any way. I am a former student of the Defense Language Institute where I studied Russian. Read more
Published 10 months ago by Kevin Hine
4.0 out of 5 stars The Perfect Bathroom Book
This is not our primary language learning tool. It is however, perfect to keep in the bathroom where it's bite-sized lessons are just the right length. Read more
Published 10 months ago by Jill Angus
5.0 out of 5 stars 2012 Edition Teaches Cyrillic, and Uses Cyrillic in Lessons
The 2012 edition teaches Cyrillic in Chapter 2, and the following chapters utilize Cyrillic in their lessons. Read more
Published 11 months ago by Cherie Jameison
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