Chinese Primer, Volumes 1-3 (Pinyin): Revised Edition


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Apr 29, 2007
8.5 x 11 in.
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This revised and updated edition of the Chinese Primer—an introductory textbook in wide use for more than a decade—uses proven techniques to put beginning learners of Mandarin Chinese on the path toward true mastery. The goal of the book is internalization—to lead students to adopt Chinese as one of their own languages and not to regard it merely as an object of study and translation.

Features include:

  • Use of hànyu pinyin romanization

  • Rigorous foundation work in pronunciation, including tones and the other special phonemes that are crucial to mastery

  • Lesson texts that combine authentic, natural Chinese expression with lively everyday topics that allow students to immediately begin using Chinese themselves

  • Carefully designed incremental introduction of grammar, accompanied by thorough and precise notes

  • Completely revised notes that link Chinese language to Chinese culture-such as names, modes of address, and conventions of politeness

  • Additional lessons for self-study during the summer following a first-year course

  • A completely revised character workbook that introduces both traditional and simplified characters and that simulates the way native speakers learn characters as children: in small doses that eventually “catch up” with speaking ability

Like its earlier edition, The Chinese Primer: Revised Edition is composed of three integrated volumes: (1) the Blue Book [Lessons]: introduction; foundation work on pronunciation; lesson dialogues in romanized Chinese and English; appendices; glossary-index; (2) the Red Book [Notes and Exercises]: vocabularies; grammar notes and culture notes keyed to the lessons; exercises; and (3) the Yellow Book [Character Workbook]. (There is also a fourth volume, the Green Book [Pinyin Character Text], which is sold separately.) Texts of the lessons are in both traditional and simplified Chinese characters, and there is a Chinese introduction for teachers.