- Hardcover: 272 pages
- Publisher: Tuttle Publishing; 2 edition (September 15, 2003)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0804833699
- ISBN-13: 978-0804833691
- Product Dimensions: 7 x 0.8 x 9.8 inches
- Shipping Weight: 1.7 pounds
- Average Customer Review: 43 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,477,572 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Elementary Vietnamese: Revised Edition 2nd Edition
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"This is a superbly constructed textbook written by an experienced teacher for the benefits of beginning learners of Vietnamese…Professor Ngo is to be congratulated on his outstanding achievement; he has indeed produced a powerful tool in the area of learning resources for Southeast Asian languages." —Nguyen Dinh–Hoa, Professor Emeritus of Linguistics and Foreign Languages, Southern Illinois University at Carbondale
"…It comes with a mp3 CD, which is super important because Vietnamese is a tonal language and the tones can be subtle to untrained ears." —I'm Not the Nanny blog
"While these particular Tuttle textbooks are suitable for, and typically used in, classroom settings, including in some of the best universities in North America, they can also serve as an excellent out-of-class reference tool and can very well complement formal language classes or other study materials for the self-learner. From my experience, this series should appeal to a broad range of people, including individuals working on their own, professional people working with a tutor, or students in a classroom setting. I have personally used the Tuttle Elementary and Continuing textbooks both as part of university classes and on my own, and I have been very satisfied with them." —Lingholic blog --This text refers to an alternate Hardcover edition.
About the Author
Dr. Binh Nhu Ngo is the Director of the Vietnamese Language Program in the Department of East Asian Languages and Civilizations at Harvard University and has been teaching Vietnamese there since 1992. He was born and educated in Hanoi, and earned his Ph.D. in linguistics from the Russian Academy of Sciences in Moscow. He has taught Vietnamese and linguistics at Moscow University, and since 1992 he has taught at the Southeast Asian Studies Summer Institute (SEASSI) and at a number of universities and colleges in the United States. He was the Vice-President of the Council of Teachers of Southeast Asian Languages (COTSEAL) and represents Harvard University at the Group of Universities for the Advancement of Vietnamese Abroad (GUAVA), whose Chair he has been since 2003. His other books include Speak & Read Vietnamese and Continuing Vietnamese. --This text refers to an alternate Hardcover edition.
Top customer reviews
The book starts off easy for me, but boy does it get progressively harder. The book teaches you Vietnamese grammar (preposition, adverbs, etc.). Sad thing is I barely understood what a preposition meant, so I found myself skimming those parts. The conversational text and vocab list in the book are a lot more handy for me since they are accompanied by audio (~8 hrs worth). The bonus of the audio CD is that you can pop it into the computer and drag the MP3 files (>1 GB) to your desktop for transfer to an iPod or something.
The negative (or positive to some) is the exercises in the book. I don't think there are answer keys for them so you will have to judge for yourself the correctness of your answer.
Overall, I think this is a good beginner book for myself. The audio CD is a lot more beneficial than the grammar lessons, but hey I'm not trying to write a dissertation in Vietnamese or anything like that. I'm just trying to retain my heritage.
Every text book must begin with a point of view. This book was written for students at Harvard. Another VN text I have uses the setting of business people, working for multinational corporations, visiting Hanoi. Imagining myself a college student again is a stretch, but not as big a stretch as imagining myself working for a multinational corporation with offices in Hanoi. I am a medical doctor with many Vietnamese patients. I have not been able to find a text tailored to my needs, and don't really think that I will.
This text teaches Northern Vietnamese. Even those from South Vietnam will tell you that "proper" Vietnamese is Northern Dialect. I think this view is as sad as it is common. But this is the framework we have. All VN language programs I have found begin by teaching Northern Dialect. Because Northern Vietnamese has more complex tone structure, it is probably more practical than learning Southern Dialect first.
Seek out and use other sources. Take about a year to do the three levels of Rosetta Stone and talk with their on line instructors. Read simple books for Vietnamese children. Get a dictionary. Visit a Vietnamese grocery store and pick up Vietnamese language magazines (reading the ads is really helpful!). Get books in translation of stuff that you know pretty well already; I got a copy of the Bible in Vietnamese. Learn songs in Vietnamese (karaoke helps).
I have found Professor Ngo's text to be extremely helpful. If I ever teach Vietnamese, this is the book I will use. The format of Dialogue-Vocabulary-Grammar-Drills has a familiar and friendly feeling. It will challenge the learner, however, and is better suited to the fairly serious student.
Most recent customer reviews
This is a solid improvement on earlier editions and now the best Vietnamese language resource on the market, and I'd recommend it for anyone who really wants...Read more