Interesting Differences

I got curious and so scanned ahead a little in Essential French (EF), since we hadn’t come to the present subjunctive yet. And what is really interesting to me is that while Alpha Teach Yourself French in 24 Hours (ATYF) treats the subject with an entire chapter (so far) within the first fourth of the book, EF leaves it for lesson 19 (the last chapter presenting new material), and only gives it one and a half pages! Not to mention that the treatment is negligent on a number of levels, in comparison. That’s a huge difference in opinion between these two authors/books on what a beginning student of French needs to know!

So anyone who actually knows French…how important do you think the present subjunctive is?


About George

I'm interested in theology, languages, translation and various sorts of fermentation.
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4 Responses to Interesting Differences

  1. Alex Poulos says:

    I guess it depends on what you want to do with French. You’ll see it in written French for sure, but from what I understand the subjunctive is slowly dying in French. It’s much more common in French than in English, but not as prominent as Spanish for instance. I think you would still be understood without having a solid grasp of it, but to master the language its pretty important.

  2. Paul D. says:

    There are quite a few grammatical constructions where not using the subjunctive would grate on a French-speaker’s ears, I think. Recognizing it at the very least is crucial.

  3. Pingback: 45 Days of French – Day 37 | σφόδρα – exceedingly

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