When you learn, and use, a foreign language, there are always things that will floor you.
Sometimes it’s the same thing, again and again!
For example, when I have heard, over the decades, my Italian wife talking about Donkey shot.
First I thought she was going crazy, or that I’d misheard.
What did donkeys have to do with this?
And in particular donkeys that had perhaps been the victim of a drive by shooting, or other malicious act, presumably not committed by a fellow donkey, otherwise it would have been Donkey bit, or Donkey kicked.
Donkey’s can’t get their hooves through the trigger guard of any sort of firearm that I’m famililar with, a fact for which abusive donkey owners should be thankful!
Normally the context would help me figure out what was wrong, but with this one, my brain would not do its thing and suggest alternative understandings.
My lateral thinking module was crashed by the pathos of it!
Poor donkey! Who would do such a thing?
And why is my wife going on about it??
Which brings us to this week’s new ‘easy’ Italian reader, which, entirely coincidentally, does indeed have donkeys in it.
Though not wounded or dead ones.
Don Chisciotte della Mancia (and yes, Italians really do pronounce the protagonist’s name as described above) is a B2/C1-level ‘riassunto’, so a brief retelling, of this classic work of world literature. Cervantes is the Spanish Dante, apparently.
You might remember we recently published I racconti di Canterbury, so now we have two in our World Literature ‘collana’, with more coming. The next one will be something by Kafka, I believe.
But yes, of course, I know!
You’re learning Italian, so would prefer to read Italian literature.
But you can do that AS WELL if you wish, as our Italian Literature collana has plenty to choose from.
I’d never read Donkey Shot, so enjoyed getting a glimpse of its craziness while commissioning, formatting and proof-reading this version.
I don’t suppose I’ll ever read the original, not in Spanish certainly, and probably not in Italian or English.
So now, at least, I’m a little more aware of what I’m missing, and of the meaning of the various cultural references that originate in Cervantes’ story.
‘Tilting at windmills’, for instance. You could Google it, obviously. Or you could read the story and try and make some sense of it…
Don Chisciotte della Mancia is 25% off the usual easy-reader price (this week only), should you be in the mood for some ‘digested’ culture. Here’s the blurb from our online ebooks shop:
Improve your Italian reading and listening skills with this B2/C1-level ‘riassunto’ for students of Italian L2 of ‘Don Chisciotte della Mancia’ by Miguel de Cervantes.
Why read the Italian version of a classic of world literature? Well, why not? Sometimes a familiar tale is reassuring when faced with the complexities of reading and listening in the language you’re learning. Or perhaps you’ve never read the story in your own language or in Spanish, and are curious?
Besides, you can do both! We have ‘easy reader’ versions of some of the classics of Italian literature, too!
- .pdf e-book (+ audio available free online)
- .mobi (Kindle-compatible) and .epub (other ebook readers) available on request at no extra charge – just add a note to the order form or email us
- 8 chapters to read and listen to
- Comprehension questions to check your understanding
- Italian/English glossary of ‘difficult’ terms for the level
- Suitable for students at intermediate level or above
- Download your Free Sample Chapter (.pdf)
Buy Don Chisciotte della Mancia, just £5.99! | Free Sample Chapter (.pdf) | World Literature | Italian Literature | Catalog
A mercoledì, allora!
How do I access my ebook?
When your order is ‘completed’ (normally immediately after your payment), a download link will be automatically emailed to you. It’s valid for 7 days and 3 download attempts so please save a copy of the .pdf ebook in a safe place. Other versions of the ebook (.mobi/Kindle-compatible, .epub) cannot be downloaded but will be emailed to people who request them.
Saturday’s bulletin of ‘easy’ Italian news is free to read and listen to.
Find it here.
Better still, work on establishing an Italian reading/listening ‘habit’ by exploiting each thrice-weekly edition.
Subscribing, and so receiving them via email immediately after they’re published on Saturdays, Tuesdays and Thursdays, is also free.
There’s advice on how I think you should use this material to improve your Italian here.
OnlineItalianClub.com | EasyItalianNews.com | EasyReaders.org (ebooks) | NativeSpeakerTeachers.com (1-1 lessons)
Kathy Simpson says
That took me longer that it should’ve done!!! Doh!
Philippa Beasty says
That made me laugh – my husband wondered what I had found so funny.
When I started listening to Italian language podcasts I would listen everyday to the assorted podcasts from SBS Radio – an Australian Radio Station who have many italian language programmes for Italian expats.
For a long time I thought that there was someone called Oscar di Carte involved …because .at the end of each broadcast they say :-
“Siete in compagnia di SBS Italian trovate altre storie su sbs.com.au/italian o scaricate la SBS RADIO app.”
It was the “… o scaricate” that my ears always heard as Oscar di Carte. Now I know a little bit better but I do still smile when I hear this.
Ah yes, Oscar!!
As a Spaniard, this made me laugh out loud. After this, I won’t be able to separate Don Quijote (“El Quijote” as we say here) from a poor donkey haha! I am obviously biased but I really recommend reading El Quijote! It’s funny and interesting and if anyone is interested in Spain, Spanish and our history, it’s a must! I will stick to my Spanish copy, though. Actually this post is making me want to re-read it again.
Thanks for the laughs!! Stay safe!