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A Practical Chinese Grammar (Mandarin) [Paperback]

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Item description for A Practical Chinese Grammar (Mandarin) by Hung-Nien Chang, Samuel Hung-Nin Cheung, Sze-Yun Liu, Li-Lin Shih, Sue Wood, Jose Cabot & Tim Ohr...

In fifty lessons, the authors examine both structural patterns and morphological features characteristic of Mandarin Chinese. The book describes cultural idiosyncrasies in language use as well as gives discoursal strategies for forming sustained conversations.

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Item Specifications...

Studio: The Chinese University Press
Pages   520
Est. Packaging Dimensions:   Length: 1.25" Width: 7.5" Height: 10.5"
Weight:   2.2 lbs.
Binding  Softcover
Release Date   Mar 1, 1997
Publisher   The Chinese University Press
ISBN  9622015956  
ISBN13  9789622015951  

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More About Hung-Nien Chang, Samuel Hung-Nin Cheung, Sze-Yun Liu, Li-Lin Shih, Sue Wood, Jose Cabot & Tim Ohr

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Product Categories

1Books > Subjects > Nonfiction > Social Sciences > Special Groups > Ethnic Studies
2Books > Subjects > Reference > Dictionaries & Thesauruses > Foreign Language > Chinese
3Books > Subjects > Reference > Foreign Languages > General
4Books > Subjects > Reference > Foreign Languages > Instruction > Chinese
5Books > Subjects > Reference > Foreign Languages > Instruction > Southeast Asian
6Books > Subjects > Reference > General
7Books > Subjects > Reference > Words & Language > Grammar
8Books > Subjects > Reference > Words & Language > Study & Teaching
9Books > Subjects > Reference > Words & Language > Vocabulary

Reviews - What do customers think about A Practical Chinese Grammar (Mandarin)?

Good back-up support for Mandarin texts  May 24, 2008
Good for add'l grammar info no matter what text you're using, but it's more meaningful if you have the first two volumes of the Practical Chinese Readers (PCR's) on hand, as this author's Lessons 1-50 are written to correspond with the grammar of PCR's Lessons 1-50 (vol I-II.) My first semester at a local community college was PCR--then the college switched to the Integrated Chinese series (authors Tao-chung Yao and Yuehua Liu--AWFUL--like Bart Simpson says, " I didn't know something could suck and blow at the same time"---And I am an "A" student). Whereas the PCR may have been too simple/vague or outdated, it works well because it stays on 1 or 2 themes in each lesson, and it's up to the teacher to teach the themes that the PCR doesn't spend any detailed time on. The author of "A Practical Chinese Grammar" has packed all his materials/details into each lesson corresponding to each PCR Lesson. In contrast, the I.C. approach is disorganized and sporatic in its grammar presentations, throwing 5 or 6 specious grammar presentations in each chapter. The higher the Lesson #, the worse it gets. For example: Complement of Degree: I.C. was so horrible at explaining it, I had no idea what the f%$# it was even talking about, so I pulled out my PCR and there, in Ch. 25, is the most lucid, uncomplicated and wonderful explanation of Complement of Degree imaginable. Please, if you are reading this and you make decisions for texts for schools, DO NOT choose I.C. Three Deans of local community colleges other than the one I attend (Laney, in Oakland, CA) told me they HATE I.C. and won't use it. Unfortunately, my community college is presided over by a political hack (Frank Chang) who hired a dear friend of his to teach Mandarin (Gaye Ying)---she not only doesn't know any Pinyin, she's from Shanghai and doesn't even try to pronounce the words in standard Mandarin/Beijing pronunciation. He hired her without any Faculty Review process, and it was she who chose the new, I.C. text and got away with it, no questions asked. I recommend this book to anyone who desires to really understand the nuances of Mandarin grammar or fill in gaps of understanding concepts presented by PCR (if you feel the instructor is unsatisfactory in that respect). A good choice for the "A" students!
An Excellent Reference  Jun 29, 2007
I am self studying Mandarin Chinese, and I have just finished reading this book in tandem with the first two volumes of the "Practical Chinese Reader" (PCR). This book has been an invaluable resource. The PCR is obviously intended for classroom study with an instructor. There is so much information missing from the PCR, I have often wondered why I am using it. This book is the best answer I can give for continuing to use the PCR. It does an excellent job of explaining the multitude of missing information in the PCR. It covers all of the grammar that should be explained in the PCR and provides many example sentences with clear concise explanations. The book is indexed, well thought out, and well organized. I would recommend it to anyone studying Mandarin Chinese regardless of whether or not the PCR is being used. You simply can't go wrong with a resource like this one!
A great find  Oct 30, 2003
I am an American studying Mandarin in Shanghai. Another student in my class found this book and recommended it to the rest of us. The book covers the questions that I have as a beginning student of Mandarin, and that our Chinese teachers don't always explain fully. I have found the explanations in this book to be clear and concise.
Over-rated  Oct 13, 2003
This book has been rather over-rated. It isn't really that well written, and the examples and explanations, though decent, aren't too well organised and chosen, at least to the eyes of a native Chinese speaker. I don't know if there're better books in the market, but this isn't entirely satisfactory.
Excellent resource!  Nov 30, 2002
This large (500+ pages) paperback is a companion volume to the 'Practical Chinese Reader' series. PCR, which is available with accompaning cassette tapes, is said to be one of the more popular teaching / learning series for Mandarin Chinese. (I'm enjoying it a lot!)

The grammar explanations in PCR leave a lot to be desired, however. (They're terse to a fault; obviously intended to be fleshed out by a teacher.) This book matches the first two books of PCR, lesson by lesson, and supplements them by giving clear, detailed explanations of the grammar points brought up. There is a wealth of sample sentences provided (simplified characters, pinyin romanization, and English translation) that clarify the grammar.

Sophisticated analysis, yet accessible to beginners - this grammar shouldn't be missed.


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