TRANSITIONAL ENGLISH FOR TRANSLATORS INTO ANY LANGUAGE


Preface


As will be quickly noticed, this version of the Transitional English text is meant to be used by English speakers who will be translating and adapting this text for use by speakers of other languages. Such translations will help speakers of other languages to learn to communicate in English much more quickly than they otherwise would. The single quotation marks that are found throughout the text are used to indicate passages where translations are to appear of preceding words, phrases, or sentences. More about this is explained at the beginning of Lesson One.

English is already, by far, the easiest language to learn in the world. It is much easier, for example, than German, and this is one of the reasons why during the early days of the United States of America, when there was a contention in America whether the new nation should speak and adopt an official German or English language, English is the language that prevailed.

English has Statue of Liberty, New York only one rival for facility in speaking and that is Mandarin Chinese; but Chinese has a much more difficult writing system than does English, and even today, there are many more speakers around the world of English than there are speakers of Mandarin Chinese.

By popular consensus of the peoples of the world, English has been chosen as the language for international, intercultural, and interpersonal communication around the globe. Yet, English can be made even easier to learn than it is now through simplification. Many successful attempts have been made to simplify its vocabulary to satisfy basic needs. But attempts at revising its spelling have failed and perhaps, as some say, are doomed to failure in the future. In addition, no attempt has been made until now to simplify the grammar of English--to make it a great deal easier to learn to speak comprehensibly than has ever been possible heretofore.

After years of research Bullfight by many people into various aspects of this endeavor, we are launching this experiment into simplified English, encompassing its vocabulary, spelling, grammar and syntax. Such a revolutionary departure from the normal English language texts has never been experimented with before, and we are offering this method which we call Transitional English, for anyone to pursue and improve, freely and without any hindrance on our part.

The Transitional English text needs to be experimented with under controlled conditions in a classroom situation. With that in mind, we have drawn up a list of suggestions that should be helpful in establishing an experimental and a control class to test the validity of this method. Many linguists have proposed this type of approach for the teaching of Standard English. We do wish to say that we will appreciate receiving any suggestions from you that will help this method improve global communication on an interpersonal face-to-face relationship among all the people of this world. Our email is: globlec@pop.uky.edu, or: lihani.prof@prodigy.net. Thank you for your wisdom in experimenting with and using Transitional English.

--The Authors, Feb. 1998.

Professor John Lihani


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Last revised on 31 July 2000