Thanks to everyone who emailed or commented in response to my question as to whether we should continue with Dante (which does make a nice summer project…)
Friday’s article had a record number of comments (scroll to the bottom to read them.) And I got a similar number of emails, which was great.
So everyone voted to go to hell, a phrase I don’t get to type that often.
Except one timorous soul who didn’t really fancy it (limbo for him, then!)
And talking of limbo, that’s Dante’s destination in Canto IV where, once our boy’s got over some initial worries, he gets to hang with ‘other’ great poets.
Here are the links to the four cantos so far:
Not to worry if you’ve been skipping some of it, though.
What I’m doing, personally, is reading and enjoying the background info, which is giving me a great idea of what the whole thing’s about.
And it’s in Italian, so good practice in itself.
Plus I’m reading the extracts Francesca’s chosen, and trying to figure them out by looking at her modern Italian version and the English translation.
And then, only if I’m in the mood, do I look at the whole Canto.
Only the English version, though, as the Italian is HARD.
And yes, my level in Italian is good, of course it is, I’ve lived in Bologna since 1998.
I read contracts and stuff in my job, laws, regulations, ‘Il sole 24 ore’ occasionally, which is famously inpenetrable.
But reading Dante is a challenge for anyone, I assure you. My kids, all bright sparks with good grades at school and college, confirmed it.
It’s tough for everyone.
So if I’m not in the mood to do the whole canto, I don’t feel bad about it.
It’s like watching a sporting event – if you have all afternoon free, then sure, doze in front of the box with a few beers and take in the whole spectacle.
But if not, make a point of catching the highlights show in the evening. Thirty minutes of the best bits and you’re done.
“Why keep a dog and bark yourself?” I always tell myself.
We’ll let Fra pick out the touchdowns and punch-ups for us, and that way keep up to speed while avoiding most of the hard work.
U good with that?
Below are the links to today’s event and to the three matches played previously.
Pop open a beer and enjoy!
Here’s the usual reminder to listen to Saturday’s bulletin of ‘easy’ Italian news.
But maybe you already took a look at EasyItalianNews.com at some point, then clicked away thinking that it was too hard for you?
Well then, a second reminder: building your reading and listening skills is actually MORE ABOUT learning to deal with the unknowns than it is simply ‘practising hearing’ language that you have already mastered.
If you want to ‘stretch’ your ability to comprehend what’s happening around you, then you need input/practice that will enable your brain to raise its game. To guess better, to figure things out.
Doing the reading and listening will help you improve, albeit gradually, even if your understanding is only partial at first.
It worked for me with Swedish.
My listening went from A1 Beginner to B1 Intermediate (and beyond!) in little over a year as a result of listening to and reading ‘easy’ news bulletins.
Plus, it’s free, so what’s to lose?
Here’s how I think you should do this (different advice for learners at different levels, or with different needs.)
And here’s Saturday’s bulletin.