Beginning Chinese Reader, Part 1 has 13 ratings and 2 reviews. C. said: Never read this, but this is how my father learned Chinese. He highly recommends. While Beginning Chinese Reader was primarily intended as a complement to the Beginning Chinese textbook also by DeFrancis, it can stand. Sometimes I feel a bit like some kind of apostle regarding Mr. DeFrancis’ work, most especially his Beginning, Intermediate and Advanced.

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In the s he wrote a full series of Chinese textbooks. This is an excellent topic, and I am generally in agreement with the original poster–specking as someone that has every book Prof.

Beginning Chinese Reader, Part II, Second Edition

This is very useful for people who don’t have the time for more dedicated options. But after some time, a begginning majority were born in the US and this series was inappropriate because it had content that was not consistent with life as a Chinese heritage in the US, daily needs, staying in contact with relatives, etc.

Word lists are available here: Book ratings by Goodreads. There’s a method behind the DeFrancis deefrancis Jorden books, and to use them effectively, a teacher has to study, understand and use the method.

Beginning Chinese Reader, Part 1

Railssa Alencar rated it it was amazing Feb 13, Beginning Chinese Reader is followed by intermediate and Advanced Chinese Readerthe whole thing together is about pages! Simply put, learning to converse Speak and Listen wasn’t possible. Zio Enzo added it Jul 20, Sign in Already have an account? I think the begiinning ways are here to stay. Having begun on the Intermediate reader myself, I ddefrancis constantly amazed at how nearly effortless it is to learn to read Chinese.


Surely if one’s serious about learning Chinese, they’d make some effort to investigate various methods? Become a Redditor and subscribe to one of thousands of communities.

Beginning Chinese Reader, Part II, Second Edition : John DeFrancis :

James rated it liked it Apr 30, My point is simply that being relatively unavailable, and visually unappealing, why would anyone choose DeFrancis books over more modern books which they may see first-hand in a bookshop?

It’s also however, nothing like the simple readings in a typical textbook, which are often too short, and too related to what you’ve just begunning, to require you to “think in Chinese” to understand it.

Textbooks have to be constantly edited and updated about every five or ten years. You need to be a member in order to leave a comment. It does not assume constant and prior exposure to Chinese. Bryan added it Jan 09, Not sure how faithful it is to the original if it is in fact based on the defrancls readers.

As an example the Chinese school where I teach, over the course of 15 years we have changed textbooks two or three times. Even putting this remark aside, each volume in the series provides additional, supplementary lessons using the simplified set.

The reason I find his Readers valuable to this day, despite the increase in available media and resources is the structure inherent in the method. Since this is considered a make-or-break issue for some people I’ll put it near the front. While on some level learning a foreign language is about rote memorization, I found that there’s other ways to achieve the same goal.

The DeFrancis series filled a need for its day and time. I would have continued on to the Intermediate Reader but special ordering used copies became too expensive to justify. While continuing to stress the basic importance of the traditional usages, such as the regular characters to be found in all materials published before the adoption of the simplified for This second edition, like the earlier first edition, introduces some of the main varieties of Chinese as found before and after the establishment of the People’s Republic of China in Books by John DeFrancis.


Well you’ve certainly convinced me. Danny Fox added it Jul 27, It is very interesting that the series went mostly out of print in the 90s, and then started to come back in as print-on-demand in the U. I think instead of trying to find the best “average” teaching method and then having everybody use that, people should figure out what teaching style best suits them, and then find resources geared towards that.

Each lesson is cumulative, building upon the characters in the previous lesson. It’s nice that they’re back in print It’s a hefty beast too, the two parts together are more than pages. It makes a huge difference having things you can read in Chinese.

The second edition has an appendix that gives the simplified equivalents for the characters used in the books. Visit our Beautiful Books page and find lovely books for kids, photography lovers and more.