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Mastering Arabic 1 and CD Pack (Arabic) Paperback – Audiobook, 28 Feb 2007


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Product details

  • Paperback: 384 pages
  • Publisher: Palgrave Macmillan; 2nd edition edition (28 Feb. 2007)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0230013120
  • ISBN-13: 978-0230013124
  • Product Dimensions: 14.5 x 2.7 x 25.9 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (86 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 80,704 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
  • See Complete Table of Contents

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Review

Mastering Arabic is the students' favourite. My students ages range from 10 to 88 years old and they all enjoy the well-paced lessons and variety of things to do found in this book. I heartily recommend this book to all those taking their first steps in the Arabic language, those who know a bit more, those teaching them and anyone pre-GCSE. A fun, well-made book --Haroon Shirwani, Independent Schools Modern Language Association Newsletter

About the Author

JANE WIGHTWICK and MAHMOUD GAAFAR run their own publishing company and are the authors of several successful Arabic titles including a new title in the Routledge Colloquial series. Through their company they attend many conferences and exhibitions and also visit mosque schools and shops, and community colleges to promote their titles.

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

76 of 79 people found the following review helpful By Mr. William J. Arrowsmith on 18 Aug. 2009
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I do wonder if all the other glowing reviews of this book are by users who have assiduously done this course from start to finish. First, the book comes in an attractive package with the CDs. The first six lessons do a good job of teaching the Arabic script, incl. basic instructions on handwriting. Overall, they have done a good job of teaching all the main grammar points throughout the course, yet it is marred by a number of things. Despite all the pictures, the book is basically a grammar course - not enough thought has been given to the most important, useful vocabulary a beginner might need. The verb is introduced far too late, so that the derived forms, weak verbs have to be introduce all in a rush towards the end, which is terrible from a memory perspective. The weakest part however, is the concentration on political vocabulary half-way through the course. Now I can say "minister of education", "convene a meeting", yet I barely know how to communicate. Also, I do feel galled at the quite large number of errors that have gone uncorrected despite being in the second edition. This is simply sloppiness, and rather unforgivable in a course where beginners need to rely on what is written. Finally, the course is poorly indexed and some of the grammar points could be better explained.

I am on the final lesson and I won't be too sad when this is over. I do hope they've done a better job with the second book - I want to master Arabic, and this course is not making it too easy.
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13 of 13 people found the following review helpful By Milady on 3 Feb. 2008
Format: Paperback
The best book I know of for introducing Arabic and to give the user a solid base. I went on to do a degree in Arabic after using this book. I found this book the easiest to understand and use, and I am aquainted with the whole range availabe (after having worked in one of the best language departments in London (Foyles) in its heyday). Now multimedia is around, there could be some interesting ways of teaching, such as the online schools, but this book would still be a good and practical way of learning. Activities such as actually using a pen and writing are essential and some of the multimedia based learning is not going to use that much, if at all.
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64 of 67 people found the following review helpful By laetitia27 on 20 Aug. 2007
Format: Paperback
I really like this book, which is the second editition and was completely updated: You learn the alphabet in little chunks so that you are not overwhelmed by the Arabic script. The layout of the book is very clear, you have lots of excercises and listening comprehensions.
With this book you even learn how to learn - the authors show you how to learn vocabulary easily and never forget it, which I find especially helpful since my schooldays are long over!
The only downside for me personally: I purchased the book without the audio cds (since I'm a bit advanced), but if you want to be able to do all the excercises you really need them, although this was not pointed out directly. Then also there is no book for the advanced pupil (yet?), but at least the authors give you advice on how to take it from there once you've worked your way through this book.
All in all a very recommendable book for those who want to learn Arabic the fun way!
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28 of 29 people found the following review helpful By C. Murray on 1 Dec. 2007
Format: Paperback
I used this prior to undertaking my Arabic degree and it gave me a good introduction to Modern Standard Arabic (MSA)its structure, grammar and vocabulary. However, it won't help you in the streets of an Arab city as no one speaks MSA as it is a very complicated language the more you get into it, even for Arabs. The spoken tongue is much simpler, has different sentence structure, easier pronunciation and often completely different words. They are, in effect completely different languages. As I say a very good course, but you need to spend time in an Arab country to pick up the spoken tongue.
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36 of 39 people found the following review helpful By Ms. L. Anderson on 11 Sept. 2007
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I purchased this set recently having only a very little knowledge of arabic (I did a few classes about 5 months before I bought the set) and I found 'mastering arabic' very clear and easy to follow. The book progresses nicely and introduces letters and grammar bit by bit. The audio CDs really help with pronounciation and are vital. It gives exercises that help with reading, writing and speaking, which i found very helpful. It teaches Modern Standard Arabic and the book is clear that it is a starting point for beginners to gain a good basic knowledge of arabic and is not just a phrase book.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Caroline H on 2 Jun. 2009
Format: Paperback
This book is by far the best Arabic course that I have seen, and I have tried quite a few. It is fun and easy to use and understand. I will definitely be going on to book 2 once I have completed this one. Would recommend it to anyone. Whether you know the basics or not, it can be used according to your own level.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Hessie on 12 Mar. 2011
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This is a very good introduction to learning Arabic, both written and spoken. The CDs include lots of careful exercises to ensure you can distinguish vital sounds. Writing the script is introduced bit by bit, and the vocabulary has been useful to me (political terms enable
you to understand news).

A few niggles - the dictionary in the back of the book is English to Arabic but not Arabic to English. It would help if the book referred to the CD track numbers for listening exercises (there's 70 tracks per CD!). And many words are introduced as examples of letters or sounds but no English translation is given which is a missed learning opportunity.

But on the whole a very useful and entertaining book.
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