Is Grammar Translation any good?
Thread poster: Raf Uzar

Raf Uzar
Poland
Local time: 01:39
Polish to English
Oct 12, 2009

I've found a great post on my favourite blog - transubstantiation - regarding Grammar Translation. What do you think of this method? Is it really that bad or is it set for a comeback?
The original article is here:
http://transubstantiation.wordpress.com/2009/10/12/in-praise-of-grammar-translation/

Raf


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Tatty  Identity Verified
Local time: 01:39
Spanish to English
+ ...
Grammar's place Oct 12, 2009

I don't know how people can translate without knowing the grammar of both the source and target language. I didn't learn English grammar until I became an EFL teacher, and it has been invaluable for me. Translation was taught as part of my degree course for the purpose of learning the foreign language and I thought it was good. I learnt translation proper at a private school after my degree. I do love a bit of grammar me, without it communication just isn't effective, all sorts of misunderstandings can creep in.

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Raf Uzar
Poland
Local time: 01:39
Polish to English
TOPIC STARTER
Fuss Oct 12, 2009

Tatty,

So why all the fuss about the 'evils' of grammar-translation, do you think?


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Tatty  Identity Verified
Local time: 01:39
Spanish to English
+ ...
2 different contexts Oct 12, 2009

I think the article talks about grammar-translation in 2 contexts: learning a foreign language, and translator training.

In the past people just learnt the rules of grammar of a foreign language, as a result they did not speak the language or understand it when spoken to. Clearly this method had its shortcomings. I do however think that it is best to get the boring stuff out of the way at school.

In relation to the second context, as I said above, grammar-translation is a useful starting technique, at least in my experience.


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Raf Uzar
Poland
Local time: 01:39
Polish to English
TOPIC STARTER
Contexts... Oct 13, 2009

Interesting that you think we should get the boring stuff out of the way at school. I believe the boring stuff should come after and school should be illuminating and always interesting (or at least most of the time).

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