- May 26 & 27 - All libraries CLOSED for Memorial Day
What’s it like to speak and communicate in many languages?
While investigating the life and language skills of nineteenth century Cardinal Mezzofanti who, it was claimed, could speak seventy-two languages, Michael Erard, author of Babel no more interviewed modern polyglots to discover how people learn and communicate in multiple languages. In his quest he meets professional and obsessive language learners, neurologists who study language functions in the human brain, winners of a hyperpolyglot language contest, and members of an Indian community who may communicate in four or more languages in the course of a day.
Here he describes how one person learns and retains many languages
Are you an aspiring polyglot? With your San Jose Public Library card you can study various languages online through our subscription to Mango languages. You can also check out language learning videos and CDs from your local library.
Other titles you may find interesting:
Mango Languages, SJPL’s online language learning database, now includes the following new languages: Cantonese Chinese, Croatian, Danish, ESL for Mandarin Chinese speakers, Finnish, Haitian Creole, Irish, Levantine Arabic, Norwegian, and Urdu.
Mango uses repetition and step-by-step lesson plans that work through common conversational elements, so you can quickly pick up basic conversation skills for travel or business.
Dreaming in Chinese : Mandarin lessons in life, love, and language by Deborah Fallows
Fallows gives excellent examples of the importance of social context of language learning and speaking, how language interacts with culture, and the features of Chinese that non native speakers find difficult: tone, indicating time and space, and lack of referential pronouns. Entertaining as well as enlightening.
Another book that discusses the cultural connection of Chinese language and society is Swallowing Clouds by A. Zee.
Do you want to learn Chinese? San José Public Library has books, audios and videos for children and adults. Recommended are the Pimsleur Chinese courses for Mandarin and Cantonese (aural approach) and Mango online language learning.
Mango Languages, SJPL’s online language learning database, now includes new languages including Farsi, Hebrew, and Korean. You can also view a YouTube promotional video about Mango, called “How Mango Works – the Intuitive Language Construction Methodology Explained”.
If you are interested in learning a language visit our new online service: Mango Language Learning
It's free to you from home with your library card log-in! Mango Language Learning is a great database for anyone to use. Its interface is very user friendly with similarities to a Rosetta Stone type learning system. With its detailed interface Mango can help you learn languages from all across the globe such as: Spanish, French, Japanese, Brazilian Portuguese, German, Mandarin Chinese, Greek, Italian, Russian and more. So if you are a novice attempting to learn the basics of a language or a intermediate to advanced speaker who just wants to brush up on some of your skills, Mango is great learning site for anyone.