Even more language and culture books on this webpage. Read a book about Italy, Great Britain, Spain or France and their culture.
372 pages long book with many photographs and a good layout!
BE FLUENT IN BRITISH LIFE AND CULTURE
• HISTORY, SOCIETY AND LIFESTYLE
• LITERATURE AND PHILOSOPHY ART AND ARCHITECTURE
• CINEMA, PHOTOGRAPHY AND FASHION MUSIC AND DRAMA
• FOOD AND DRINK
• MEDIA AND SPORT
An cut/excerpt from this e-book:
The British state harbours four nations –Wales, Scotland, England and Northern Ireland – each with its own distinct culture. All four nations can be broken down further, into regions where landscape, language and lifestyle vary markedly. And then there’s the dense historical jigsaw, from stone circles to ruined abbeys, each corner of Britain has its story to tell. Surely no other country so modest in scale is so regionally pronounced, so packed with cultural variety, so connected to its past yet steadfastly modern.
So,is it Britain, the United Kingdom or the British Isles?
-The term Great Britain, or just Britain (or Breatainn Mh r in Scottish Gaelic and Prydain Fawr inWelsh), is usually taken to mean England,Wales and Scotland.The United Kingdom throws Northern Ireland into the mix.The British Isles includes the Republic of Ireland and any island lumps surrounding mainland Britain. Informally – and for most Brits – the term Britain is taken to mean England,Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland, and is used as such throughout this book.
Small but beautiful:
The lie of the land Britain squeezes a pleasingly diverse landscape into its modest frame. Emily Brontë’s feral moorland with its ‘bare masses of stone’ might sound a long way from William Blake’s ‘pleasant pastures’, but they coexist closely and comfortably. If we’re looking for a vague rule, the further north and west you travel the lumpier Britain gets. Fertile lowlands in south-eastern England are relieved by soft hills before theWest Country breaks out into stretches of moorland. In northern England the Pennine hills form a spine running from the Peak District through the Dales up to the border country with Scotland, while the winsome peaks of the Lake District cover England’s north-west. Much ofWales, to the west of England, and Scotland, to the north, are mountainous. Scotland harbours the Highlands and Islands, rare in Britain for retaining an element of wilderness. Only these northerly uplands, rugged, boggy and cold, escaped the centuries of farming that tamed Britain’s countryside, native deciduous forests included. Across the Irish Sea, west of southern Scotland, lies Northern Ireland, a land of bare, peaty hills encircling Lough Neigh, the largest freshwater lake in the British Isles.
Britain breaks down into a complex map of regions, counties, boroughs, districts, unitary authorities and parishes. Some are historic and familiar but unofﬁcial; others are new and sanctioned by government but rarely used in conversation. Each of the four British nations has been divided into counties (so called because local regions were once controlled by counts (or earls)) for hundreds of years. England has 39 ‘historic’ counties, each with its own cultural identity shaped by customs, accents and sporting teams. However, for the purposes of local government, the old, geographical arrangement of counties has been sliced and diced to accommodate metropolitan counties (urban zones that spread, connected, across the old boundaries) and unitary authorities.Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland have been similarly affected by modern reshufﬂing. InWales the 13 historic counties were reduced to eight in the 1970s and then carved into 22 unitary authorities in 1996. In Northern Ireland the ratio is six old counties – still used in everyday chat by the majority – to 26 new district council areas. Scotland’s current set up accommodates 32 council areas, although, again, the map of 34 old counties has more day-to-day resonance for most people.
FROM THE BOOK:
When actress Ingrid Bergman, who knew five languages, was asked which she preferred, she replied: "English for acting, Italian for romance, French for diplomacy, German for philosophy ... and Swedish for secrecy, because so few people know it."
Which language should you take up? French sounds pretty. But Mexico is closer. Or would Italian be easier?
FROM THE BOOK! / I’ll guide you step-by-step through your language’s sounds, words, and grammar. Every step of the way, we’ll use your memorization system to learn more rapidly. Finally, we’ll develop your listening and reading comprehension, as we pave a path toward fluent speech.
Along the way, I’ll show you all my favorite toys. I like finding ways to make life more efficient, even when finding a faster way to do something takes more time than simply doing it.
( This book is written in the year 2014 )
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