Wednesday, July 03, 2013

Teach Yourself Slovene

I had ordered a used copy of Teach Yourself Slovene off Amazon a while back.  I'm not planning on going beyond what this book teaches, so should be interesting to see how far I get.  You could call this a side project.  :)
  
Slovenia used to be part of Yugoslavia, but the language is considered different enough not to be grouped with Serbian, Croatian and Bosnian.  I'm still not clear on whether Bosnian is considered a separate language.  I do have a Bosnian dictionary, but it could probably just as easily have been labeled a Serbian or Croatian dictionary.

Of course like most language books, pronunciation is gone over first.  This part feels rushed.  For instance, they don't tell you how the letter C should sound.  I've been pronouncing it like "ts" just because that's how it's typically pronounced in other Slavic languages, but maybe Slovenian is different?  I don't have the recordings, so will have to look online to fill in the details.

Flipping through the book I could recognize some words, so having at least a limited knowledge of Serbian will be helpful to an extent.  One thing I've heard about that makes Slovenian stand out is the dual number thing.  They mention this in the introduction, like a heads up.  It sounds easy enough on the surface: one = singular; two = dual; three or more = plural.  I guess the hard part is just a matter of remembering to use dual when you instinctively want to use plural for two things or people, and of course learning an extra set of case endings.
  
This book didn't get very good reviews on Amazon, but there really aren't many resources for learning Slovenian, so it's better than nothing, at least to get started.  I did notice a typo right away in Unit 01. The dialogue has Izvoil! while the vocab list has Izvoli!  Anyway, it means "Here you are!" when being handed something.  

The book itself seems pretty thin.  Only 184 pages in all, and that includes the introduction, exercise key, appendix and word list.  I could be surprised to find it's actually packed with a lot more than it looks.  To confuse myself even further, maybe I'll tackle this together with my Teach Yourself Serbian and two copies of Teach Yourself Serbo-Croat.



1 comment:

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