Cat in the Stax: What about Duolingo?
By Ethan Shea
As you may have seen in a blog published earlier this week, the Booker Prize was recently awarded to Shehan Karunatilaka. This prestigious award is given annually to an outstanding work of fiction written in the English language. The Nobel Prize in Literature, however, can be given to an author who works writes in any language. This year, Annie Ernaux, who writes in French, won the highly coveted Nobel Prize in Literature.
The announcements of both these award recipients who work in different languages led me to look into Falvey Library’s resources that can help you learn new languages.
On Falvey’s website, you can find a Subject Guide for the Spanish language. This guide also includes resources on other Romance languages. A particularly helpful resource you can find here is Mango Languages, an online language-learning website that all Villanova students, faculty and staff have access to. You can access the Mango language database here!
But what about Duolingo? In addition to Mango, you can also make use of the free version of Duolingo, something I have been doing for a while to keep my French skills in tact. If you do not already know, Duolingo is a language-learning app known for its uniquely threatening yet comedic social media presence. You can even compete with friends and other online learners on leaderboards in the app.
Not to brag, but last week I reached a 500 day streak on Duolingo. Am I fluent in French? Absolutely not, but I am certainly more capable than I would have been if I never started this streak.
In addition to these resources, you can check out this recently published blog to learn about Ugegbe: Jọnalụ Ụwandịigbo, a new academic journal that publishes work in Igbo.
Lastly, here are some books you can find at Falvey, either in the stacks or online, that can help you learn various non-English languages:
Conversation Guide: Spanish – Eduardo Rosset
Irish Nouns: A Reference Guide – Andrew Carnie
Beginner’s Mandarin Chinese Dictionary: The Ideal Dictionary for Beginning Students – Li Dong
An Independent Study Guide to Reading Latin – Peter V. Jones
Ethan Shea is a graduate student in the English Department at Villanova University and Graduate Assistant at Falvey Library.