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36o China Review International: Vol. 4, No. 2, Fall 1997© 1997 by University ofHawai'i Press Chih-p'ing Chou and Der-lin Chao. A Trip to China: Intermediate Reader ofModern Chinese. 2 volumes. Princeton: Princeton University Press, 1996. x, 174 pp. (text); viii, 265 pp. (vocabulary, grammar notes, and exercises). Paperback $39.50, isbn 0-691-02883-4. Chih-p'ing Chou, Xuedong Wang, and Joanne Chiang. China's Peril and Promise: An Advanced Reader. 2 volumes. Princeton: Princeton University Press, 1996. x, 365 pp. (text); v, 287 pp. (vocabulary and grammar notes). Paperback $39.50, isbn 0-691-02884-2. In only five years, Princeton University Press has emerged as a major contender in the Chinese-language textbook market. While Chinese Primerwas the first major product of a newly invigorated Chinese Linguistics Project at Princeton during the 1980s, publication of that text was initially controlled by Harvard University Press. With the shift of Primer publication to Princeton in 1994, and the publication of five intermediate and advanced-level textbooks since 1992, Princeton can lay claim to offering a fully articulated set of Chinese-language textbooks sufficient to meet the basic needs of many American-based Chinese-language programs—the first new textbook series produced in the United States to do so since the seminal Yale DeFrancis series of the 1960s. Princeton's two newest additions to the series, the intermediate-level A Trip to China (hereafter Trip) and the advanced-level China's Peril and Promise (hereafter Peril) can be recommended, but in part wiüi the contextualizing qualification of the still relatively impoverished state of Chinese language pedagogical materials at the post-beginning level in the United States. There is the further qualification that applies regardless of the language being taught, namely that no textbook series in itselfis sufficient given the ready availability of authentic television and motion-picture materials and a wide range of computer-based and World Wide Web-delivered technological tools. As with the format of most of the Princeton series, the lesson texts for both Trip and Peril are placed in a separate book from the resource volumes containing vocabulary lists and grammar notes (and for Trip, exercises). The advantage of this is that students need not (or are not tempted to) flip back and forth between the vocabulary glossary and the text; the disadvantage is that for preparation purposes , the student needs a reasonably large working area to move back and forth between the two good-sized volumes. Also as widi the previously published books in this series, Trip and Peril provide traditional and simplified character versions of each lesson text on facing pages. This allows for maximum flexibility with respect to both an institution's character system of choice and a student's particular Reviews 361 preference or form ofexpertise. One small technical question arises in this facingpage approach; since the simplified characters are placed on the left-hand page and the traditional characters on the right-hand page of the text volume, why are the vocabulary lists arranged in reverse order (traditional on the left, simplified on the right) ofthe resource texts? The text volumes for Trip and Peril do differ in that while Trip's includes a vocabulary index (both Chinese-English and English -Chinese), Peril does not; the index for Peril (Chinese-English only) is at the end ofits vocabulary and grammar-notes volume. In addition, the discussion questions regarding each ofthe lessons appear immediately following each lesson text in Peril; the discussion questions for Trip are found in the resource volume. As for the resource volumes, special praise should be given to Der-lin Chao, the author ofthe vocabulary, grammar notes, and exercises for Trip. This is a meticulously annotated reference source, with exhaustively complete vocabulary lists and grammar notes, and a substantial range of exercise activities (controlled composition , both open-ended and in response to specific questions; fill-in-theblanks ; true-false questions; translations; compositions; and "activities"—the final category will be discussed in greater detail below). There is only one serious grammatical error and one lexical point of contention in Chao's notes. In explaining the use ofthe budan . . . erqie . . . construction, she writes that "When...

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Additional Information

ISSN
1527-9367
Print ISSN
1069-5834
Pages
pp. 360-364
Launched on MUSE
2011-03-30
Open Access
No
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