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Colloquial Afrikaans: The Complete Course for Beginners (Colloquial Series)
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
I m sorry to go against the flow here, BUT I must say that I simply find that course in Afrikaans absolutely excellent .
Yes indeed, I did buy the book and the CDs together, as they are a must have to be able to tackes the sounds of Afrikaans.
Afrikaans is NOT a difficult language.. It is a tricky one though, especially if you do already speak Dutch . The tendency to pronounce Afrikaans like you would pronounce Dutch is very tempting.. and alas, totally wrong.
That is why, if you intend to buy this course, or the good Teach Yourself Afrikaans by Lydia McDermott.. make sure you do buy the complete package, and not the book only, or you will trigger some good laughs among your afrikaners friends when you ll try to speak the lingo.

This course is well written, easy to follow and does give you enough knowledge at the end to be able to enjoy your times in South Africa and use your afrikaans. Also, something I want to say, Afrikaners are very friendly and will be more than willing to help you learning their language.. Reading the book in the tube and on the plane while flying to Capetown did trigger some amazing friendly helps from native afrikaans speakers.

A great book and a very user friendly course.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on 5 January 2007
Provided you have both the book and the tapes/CDs, this is a very good course. The author has written the standard grammar-description of Afrikaans in English so knows his subject (and how to teach it) well and shares this knowledge in a practical form in this textbook. As the series title suggests, many comments alert the reader to differences between the colloquial and a more bookish form of the language. The voices on the tapes speak slowly enough to allow easy understanding and immitation. There is a key to the exercises as well as a very brief grammar summary, an Afrikaans-English glossary, an English-Afrikaans glossary, and an index. My only disappointment is that the book does not make use of the International Phonetic Alphabet when describing Afrikaans sounds but relies on the "sounds like English X but with lips rounded" method.
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
on 14 August 2008
After all the rave reviews for this course, I hate to rain on the parade. However, I feel that some crucial parts are missing from the other reviews. Yes, it's a good book and for exactly the reasons other reviewers have mentioned. The grammar is very well defined and Afrikaans is a remarkably easy language to learn.

Unfortunately, this books comes with a major problem. No wordlists! In almost any other Colloquial or Teach Yourself course, each dialogue is followed by a word list containing the words used in the dialogue. That's the way you study the words and enlarge your vocabulary. Not so in this course. For the first few lessons, the dialogues are followed by an English translation. This isn't a very good substitute, especially not as word order is very different in Afrikaans. You can't be sure whích English words mean what, so you can only learn phrases like a parrot. After a few lessons, even this English translation is dropped and your left with dialogues in Afrikaans with no wordlist nor translation! How is this different from reading a newspaper in Afrikaans and having a dictionary to check up each word? Not at all, and that's free on-line.

I usually prefer Colloquial courses over Teach Yourself, but in this case I strongly recommend the excellent course Teach Yourself Afrikaans. The author of that course didn't try to get off too easy by ignoring the word lists and the result is that Teach Yourself Afrikaans is an excellent book. The author of this book was lazy, and it is the reader who pays the cost. So Afrikaans is an easy language, but this book makes everything it can to make learning it harder. Teach Yourself Afrikaans makes it easier.
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17 of 23 people found the following review helpful
on 22 March 2004
The recordings has very little direct english translation - you know you are learning different greeting variations but there is no individual translation to allow you to differentiate between each in english
The book is the same, loads of conversations in africaans, with a translation for one variation of the conversation but no translation for the rest so you have no idea what the difference is.
Unless you already know the basics of the language, forget this course
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7 of 12 people found the following review helpful
on 7 November 2001
i found that this was very good but i only managed to learn properley once i had the book as well as the tapes, the tapes only give limited learning without the book
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3 of 14 people found the following review helpful
on 23 April 2002
I found this not very useful at all. Phrases on the tapes would have helped my pronunciation if they had us some 'phenetics' to help...
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