Modern French Versus Textbook French

Conversational French and textbook French can be very different

Camille Chevalier-Karfis explains why even the best students of French can struggle in real-life conversations - it's because the spoken language is very different to the written one...

Many French students learn French from textbooks, which insist on grammatical structure and verb conjugations but give few pointers on pronunciation.

Unfortunately, most textbooks do not cover modern French. I am not only talking about modern slang, but the type of French that anyone (from the market street vendor to my 60 year-old mother-in-law) would use.

The way people speak French is very different than the way people write it. It affects the vocabulary we use, and the sentence structure – especially when asking questions – and the pronunciation.

So, if you’ve ever wondered why you do not understand a ...

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