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Street French 1: The Best of French Slang (Street Language) 2nd Edition

4.3 out of 5 stars 16 customer reviews
ISBN-13: 978-0471138983
ISBN-10: 0471138983
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Editorial Reviews

Language Notes

Text: English, French

From the Publisher

This easy-to-use book teaches the essentials of colloquial French and French slang in 15 simple lessons. Each lesson describes the language and sentence structure commonly used in a variety of practical settings. Every lesson consists of dialogue, vocabulary, vocabulary practice, grammar, and exercises. Includes a thesaurus, a glossary of all slang terms used in the lessons, and a list of English words commonly used in colloquial French. This updated revision contains pronunciation guides for dialogues, antonyms, synonyms, more exercises, crossword puzzles, and fill-ins plus greatly expanded glossaries.
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Product Details

  • Series: Street Language
  • Paperback: 272 pages
  • Publisher: Wiley; 2 edition (April 17, 1996)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0471138983
  • ISBN-13: 978-0471138983
  • Product Dimensions: 6 x 0.7 x 9.1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 11.2 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (16 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #390,353 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

David Burke is the author of over 100 products and books on how to use and understand slang and idioms in different languages. His books are currently used as course curriculum by Berlitz Language Schools, UCLA, Harvard University, New York University (NYU) and Hewlett Packard.

David was brought up in a multi-lingual household and knows English, French, Italian, and American Sign Language. He is also a musician, having worked as a television composer and as the in-house composer for the Los Angeles Olympic Organizing Committee.

In 1999, David became known as "Slangman" to 90 million listeners in 120 countries due to his regular 5-year segment on Voice of Americas Coast to Coast. Throughout the past 10 years, he has been the owner and CEO of Slangman Publishing, Inc., a publishing company specializing in materials on slang and idioms.

David is also the creator of Slangman's World, a children's TV show, currently in preproduction, which introduces children age 2-6 to the world of foreign languages and cultures, as well as popular American expressions in an environment of music, animation, and magic.

To date, David has appeared in more than 250 national and international radio and television programs helping parents to understand their teens, including; The Jenny Jones Show, The Sharon Osbourne Show, Entertainment Tonight, CNN International, and has been a recurring guest on the KTLA Morning Show and Canada's most popular talk show, the Vicki Gabereau Show. David was also a commentator at the 2004 Academy Awards for the BBCs Five Live (a program broadcasting to 7 million people throughout the United Kingdom) to speak about slang used in American movies and TV shows.

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Drew Blood on October 26, 2001
Format: Paperback
There is one great thing about the "Street French" series that has been neglected: it is not only a great introduction to "slangy" French, but to conversational French in general. Most of the material in books and tapes that purport to teach conversational French is usually quite stilted. The vocabulary is usually not very large, and diction is much more precise than is actually spoken by the French themselves. "Street French" includes a lot of information that does not even deal with slang. For instance, there is a lot of material about contractions and colloquial constructions that one rarely encounters in college textbooks, even those that take a conversational approach.
There are tapes available (must haves) from the publisher that include all the dialogue in the series--in *real* conversational style. They are spoken very quickly, and are difficult to master at first. But the hard work will pay off !! After using these books and tapes, I can finally understand a lot of dialogue in French movies that I could just never figure out, since I didn't know about the constructions unique to the spoken language.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
From Paris, France, and a teacher of French at at all levels, (including adult courses),I think I am qualified to grade this book.
This is exactly the pronounciation that I try to have my students understand. Even if they cannot pronounce correctly, at least they are able to understand the French when they speak!
Many of the non-native teachers of French can, more or less, speak academic French (some can't!), but faced with a native French speaking person, they can't understand most of the conversation.
I am definitely going to use this booklet as part of my teaching material,along with some other ones.
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By A Customer on January 12, 2004
Format: Paperback
This is a really good book, I must say. It's not the book that I originally wanted to like, thinking that it was just going to teach me basic vocabulary, but it goes much deeper than that. Mr. Burke teaches you many important things such as the contractions that the French commonly use and also the way Fench ask questions, etc. These ideas are what seperate this book from just a basic slang vocabulary book.
Mr. Burke will teach you how to sound like a native French speaker. The contractions section is a great example of how this works. He teaches you that instead of saying something like 'Je ne peux pas' (the English equivalent of "I am not able to") you should say something more along the lines of 'Je'n peux'pa' (sounds more like "I can't.") These are the essentials that will keep you from sounding just like a French student (and speaking Scholarly French) to sounding like a native speaker who has lived in France for years (something much better).
If you are interested in learning French beyond what a typical academic setting can bring to you, this is definitely a book and a series I recommend. For anyone who wishes to go to France and speak a more natural and believable French, this is the book for you. I would recommend this to anyone and would even be willin to buy it as a gift for any one of my friends.
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Format: Paperback
I bought this book before I trotted off to Paris a couple years ago. I'd taken French in high school and college, and I bought this book to refresh my French a bit. I'm so glad I did! This book teaches you the way that the French really speak, dropping letters and words just the way we do when we speak English. None of my French teachers prepared me for Paris. I would've thought I'd learned the wrong language.

This book will help you take the French that you were taught and turn it into the language that the French actually speak. I'd recommend that most people have had at least a year of high school French to make the most use of this book. If you haven't had any French, or at least a Romance language, and you're going to France in a hurry, you might want to get a phrase book and memorize it. This isn't the right book for an emergency.

TK Kenyon
Author of Rabid: A Novel and Callous: A Novel
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Format: Paperback
This book and this author's book 3 (Naughty French) are 2 of the funniest books I have ever owned. I studied French at University for 7 years and believe me the French in these books is not what I learned. I cannot tell you how refreshing these two books were to me after having studied French formally at the University. These books teach you how people in the street talk, how the people engage informally with each other in every day interactions. I can remember when I first went to France and could barely survive for the first 2 weeks I was there because I could understand next to nothing---because the natives were all speaking in slang. I wondered if I had really been taught French or Greek---but after 2 weeks I began to figure out that the French I had been taught was proper French and the natives could all understand me---but they had their own lingo of slang just like we have here. Slowly, but surely I began to pick up the slang expressions from them, but having been exposed to these 2 books would have made my transition period infinitely easier and smoother. I strongly recommend this book and his other books to anyone planning on going to France and to those who want to have a good laugh---this book is extremely funny as well as useful. I wish I had known about this book a long time ago. I think a book like this should be used in French classes in conjunction with a formal French language grammar because this book to me is just as important as the formal grammar boook---you need to know how the people actually talk in every day circumstances---not just formal conversations.
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