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94 internautes sur 94 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
Elementary Korean is the best 15 juin 2004
Par Russell D. Holloway - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format: Relié
After studying Korean (on my own using internet sources etc etc) I have decided that this book is definitely by far one of the best books you can get for Korean. It contains an incredible amount of information. Most courses are quite small for Korean and do not contain a great deal, or are hard to manage. I have looked at the Rosetta Stone series for Korean (costing $300) and this $50 book is by far better than that whole program. It is better than any books I have seen in book stores. I have done the Pimsleur course which is a little strange in my opinion. Pimsleur does help with pronunciation a little bit but some of the language structure is a bit weird and not natural for the Korean Language. I feel that ever since I bought this book a couple weeks ago (I am on lesson 6 out of 15 I believe) I am learning at a much faster pace than I ever was before.

1) The grammar in this is excellent. It contains many many grammar points for every chapter and introduces them in a nice order (meaning you get important stuff first unlike some other courses I have looked at where you have to wait till near the end of the course to really dig into some good grammar).
2) The vocabulary consists of a surplus of words that anyone could ever want to learn as they are starting Korean.

I admit, this course is really hard and does contain a lot of information right from the start and might be hard on someone who does not know anything about Korean, but if you have already begun looking into the Korean Language, I highly recommend this. I do not know how good of a job it does teaching Hangul as I already knew most Hangul when beginning this book, but I do know it covered some points and specific irregulars and pronunciation rules that I had not previously known so it probably is very good at Hangul as well. Others have said to do the 2 Hangul chapters first, which might be a good idea to someone who does not know it. It should be a pretty good book for teaching Hangul but I am not entirely sure if it teaches well and easy to understand for someone who does not know Hangul, but it seems to do a good job. The first two chapters on just basic sentences and sayings people should know were alright in my opinion. Chapter 1 is good because it deals with just simple things like yes, no, nice to meet you, thank you, etc...But honestly, the romanization confuses me very very much so I would learn Hangul first (it has both romanization and Hangul in the chapters 1 and 2 because they do not introduce Hangul until chapter 3). The romanization has a chart for how to pronounce all the strange letters they use for romanization and all, and I honestly think Hangul would be much easier to learn than learning romanization used in these two chapters. But if you know the Hangul (which is covered in the book) then chapter 1 is very good. Chapter 2 covers basic information on what a teacher might say in the classroom or the students, which didn't do much for me as I am learning completely on my own. 3 and 4 is Hangul. Chapter 5 is where this book finally really kicks in. Starting with Chapter 5 you have all your lists of vocabulary, your dialogues, and many explanations on grammar. Chapter 5 is where it gets intense.

People have mentioned the audio cd is not very good. I disagree. I think it is excellent. Even though it is just one 74 minute cd (seemed like it wouldn't last very long) it has most anything on the cd you would want being pronounced. It does not give you time to repeat after them or does not say words twice, but it fits a lot of words and spoken Korean on the one cd. You can listen to it and figure out how the word should be said. The woman speaker speaks at a nice pace, while the male speaker is a little faster but still a nice pace in my opinion. Listening to the male speaker helps build your listening comprehension because when speaking with a real Korean it will be just as hard if not harder to understand. The cd is excellent in my opinion.

Lastly, I want to mention the exercises. There are exercises at the ends of the chapters (mainly beginning with Chapter 5 when the real lessons begin) which I highly recommend you doing. Luckily I am highly interested in the Korean language and find it very fun to learn so I can make myself do them. Some may seem a bit dull or long or pointless at first but I know that's not the case. When it says figure out what this is in Korean and write out the WHOLE sentence for each one, I highly recommend doing that. It will greatly help, even if it is a lot of work. It has all the answers (or answers that work - for example if it says translate this sentence into Korean, it will give a correct translation, when there are a couple different ways to translate it. That is the only problem I have found so far. Sometimes its hard to check your answers if your working on your own and they only give one possible solution...but, they do cover an answer for every exercise in the book.).

Overall, I like everything about this book. It covers everything very well.
72 internautes sur 74 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
nice book 30 octobre 2000
Par esseyo - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format: Relié Achat vérifié
Since I am looking mostly for reading/writing proficiency I find this to be a great book.

+ The grammar notes are clear and well illustrated.
+ The vocabulary is a lot but not completely overwhelming. The authors try to group closely related words physically close together to reduce the cost of learning new vocabulary.
+ Better than Myondo in presentation of material. Instead of spreading out related grammar material, it tries to present them together.
+ What I think is really great are the pronunciation rules ... you won't find this kind of practicality and detail in most other text. (Now, Myondo is very detailed but describing ssang-chiut as a voiceless alveo-palatal glottalized affricative isn't particularly helpful to me).
+ No Chinese characters are used in this book which is a plus at this level since Chinese characters rarely appear in the main text of popular Korean newspapers anyway
+ The authors actually provide a decent number of exercises with ANSWERS in the back! Now what they need to publish next is a supplementary reading and exercise book.

- I concur with a previous reviewer that the CD does not have enough basic sound examples.

4.5 stars.
36 internautes sur 36 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
Learning made easy 26 novembre 2009
Par Filipa Cardoso - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format: Relié Achat vérifié
Elementary Korean is simple and has a very easy and honest approach to learning korean.

Although I am using it by myself (without the support system of classes and a teacher)I have found that it is increasingly easy to read and speak the language.

It has a lot of exercises (with the answers included) and also a great audio cd so you can pick up the correct wording.

I recomend it to anyone how wants to learn korean, by yourself (as I do) or as a support book for classes.
40 internautes sur 41 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
Wonderful, but difficult book 25 février 2004
Par Ryan - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format: Relié
As others have said, this book is difficult, but wonderful. It will not hold your hand, and you have to be dedicated to learning the language. Personally, I enjoy that its raw learning without all the fluffy stuff (corny graphics, etc). I love that it is all in Hangul without Romanizations (there are only Romanizations in chapters 1-3). I have used other texts that have full Romanizations and many times they end up hurting you in the end because they are wrong, inconsistant, and you become dependant on them. There is also a good Korean-English/English-Korean glossary in the back in Hangul-alphabetical order (most are not), so you don't really need a dictionary yet, but of course one wouldn't hurt (warning: the dictionary with the big L on the cover is good, but in Romanized-alphabetical order which can be a pain for looking up Hangul words). Here are some things that will help you though:
-Yes, the CD is super fast, but that is the normal speaking speed in Korea. What I did to make it easier to hear was to play the CD in Windows Media Player and use the "Play Speed" function to slow down the CD. It really helped!
-Have a very basic understanding of some linguistics terms such as voiced, unvoiced, unreleased, aspirated. The authors are trained linguistics and sometimes use some jargon, although it is usually explained.
-I highly recommend learning Hangul (the Korean alphabet) before starting this book. The authors do not introduce it (but still use it) until chapter 3, which is very difficult if you do not have a Korean teacher.
-That brings my last point. If you know a native Korean, make sure you use him/her as a resource. That probably goes without saying for any book. However, I have been learning Korean about 90% on my own, and have used this book as my guide fairly successfully (no fault of the book; it is just a HARD language to grasp).
Good luck with your Korean learning!
42 internautes sur 45 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
Incorrect pronunciation 9 septembre 2007
Par A. Song - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format: Relié
*You would have to encode the page to "Korean", or you will not see the Korean character examples below.*

My husband (Chinese-American) recently purchased this book on the basis of all of the glowing reviews and I have to say I was shocked to discover the errors on the pronunciation of a few of the Korean consonants and vowels. I have not gone through the rest of book yet with my husband but after seeing the error in the pronunciation guide in lesson 3 of the book, I felt compelled to write a review, especially since the rest of the book is based on these basic sounds. As a native Korean speaker, I would like to clarify these errors.

The most difficult consonant sounds in the Korean language for a non-Korean speaker to distinguish are "b" and "p" sounds and "g"(the hard kind, as in "gun") and "k", and "j" and "ch" sounds. For example in the book, they explain the "¤²" is to pronounce is as "p as in park, but relaxed." This is incorrect. It's actually a "b" sound as an "bunk", therefore a more relaxed "b", but definitely NOT a "p". Instead of describing sounds of "b", "j" and "g" the book incorrectly uses variations of "p", "ch", and "k" to describe these sounds.

When a learner hears let say the "b" in "banchan" spoken fast by a Korean speaker within a sentence, the person might indeed hear "panchan", with some kind of a "p". But I would like to stress that this would be an incorrect way of learning. For a native speaker, there's a definite difference between those two sounds.

Another error I would like to note is the pronunciations for "¤Ä" and "¤À". In the book those two vowels are described as "a as in bat" and "e as in bet". The fact is, there really isn't a difference; it is always the "e as in bet". If you pronounce "¤Ä" as "a as in bat", it would make you sound less like a native. I can sadly imagine someone who has completed this book pronouncing "yes" in Korean incorrectly as "nah" when the correct pronunciation would be "neh".

To sum up this review, here's an excerpt I found:
"The more difficult aspect for the beginner is the difference in sound values of b and p sounds, j and ch,and t and d. This is compounded by the widely diverging romanization systems used for Korean: Lukoff, Yale, Horne, and McCune-Reischauer. This confusion can be easily avoided however if you learn the Korean script, Hangul, as soon as possible, and skip the middle step of romanization completely. This is strongly advised, because it will save valuable time, lessen your confusion, and greatly enhance the speed with which you learn Korean. It will also help you to avoid spelling mistakes (there are two T's, two P's, etc.in the script) when you start to write Korean Hangul script."

Most readers of this book will probably not have a native Korean speaker to point out these errors so I just wanted you to be aware. The grammar and dialogues in this book seems fine, but it is important for Korean learners to learn how to pronounce the Korean alphabet correctly and then tackle the rest of the grammar in this book.
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