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Italian

Photo Courtesy of Morgan Powers

Quick Facts

 

Total Worldwide Speakers: 61,696,677

 

Language Family: Indo-European

 

Spoken in:
 
Italy, Argentina, Australia, Belgium, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Brazil, Canada, Chile, Croatia, Egypt, Eritrea, France, Germany, Israel, Libya, Liechtenstein, Luxembourg, Malta, Paraguay, Philippines, Puerto Rico, Romania, San Marino, Saudi Arabia, Slovenia, Somalia, South Africa, Switzerland, Tunisia, United Arab Emirates, United Kingdom, United States, Uruguay, Vatican State

 

 

History:
 
Italian first started to appear in written documents during the 10th century in the form of notes and short texts inserted into Latin documents such as lawsuits and poetry. For a long time there was no standard written or spoken language in Italy and writers tended to write in their own regional dialects.  During the 15th and 16th centuries both Latin and Italian were used for technical and scientific texts. The Italian used was full of Latin words and over time Latin was used less and less as Italian became increasingly popular.

Today the Tuscan dialect is known as Italian (Italiano) and is the official language of Italy. It is the main language of literature and the media. Each region of Italy also has its own dialect, some of which are so distinct from standard Italian that they are mutually unintelligible. The Sicilian dialect for example, is sometimes regarded as a separate language and has a literary tradition older than Italian itself.

 

 

Sources: The Ethnologue & Omniglot

Books

 
Basic Italian

 
Author: Charles Speroni, Carlo L. Golino, Barbara Caiti
Publisher: Harcourt Brace College Publishers
Copyright: 1993
ISBN 0-03-074991-3
No of Copies 1

 
Eccoci! Beginning Italian

 
Author: Paola Blelloch & Rosetta D’Angelo
Publisher: John Wiley & Sons, Inc.
Copyright: 1998
ISBN 0-471-30941-9
No of Copies 1

 
Parliamo Italiano! (Instructor’s Annotated Edition)

 
Author: Suzanne Branciforte & Anna Grassi
Publisher: Houghton Mifflin Company
Copyright: 1998
ISBN 0-395-75767-3
No of Copies 1

 
Prego! (Instructor’s Annotated Edition)

 
Author: Graziana Lazzarino, Maria Cristina Peccianti, & Andrea Dini
Publisher: McGraw-Hill
Copyright: 2008
ISBN 978-0-07-326672-5
No of Copies 1

DVDs

 
The Bicycle Thief

 
Audio Tracks Italian
Subtitles English
Running Time 89 min
Rating Not Rated

 
Bread & Tulips

 
Audio Tracks Italian
Subtitles English
Running Time 116 min
Rating PG-13

 
Don't Move

 
Audio Tracks Italian
Subtitles English
Running Time 122 min
Rating Not Rated

 
Good Morning, Night

 
Audio Tracks Italian
Subtitles English
Running Time 105 min
Rating Not Rated

 
Il Postino - The Postman

 
Audio Tracks Italian
Subtitles English
Running Time 108 min
Rating PG

 
I'm Not Scared

 
Audio Tracks Italian
Subtitles English
Running Time 101 min
Rating R

 
La Strada

 
Audio Tracks Italian
Subtitles English
Running Time 108 min
Rating Not Rated

 
Life is Beautiful

 
Audio Tracks Italian
Subtitles English
Running Time 116 min
Rating PG-13

 
Matrimonio a la Italiana

 
Audio Tracks Italian
Subtitles Spanish & Portuguese
Running Time 102 min
Rating Not Rated

 
Rahil's Secret (Il Segreto di Rahil)

 
Audio Tracks Italian & Arabic
Subtitles English
Running Time 86 min
Rating Not Rated

 
Respiro

 
Audio Tracks Italian
Subtitles English
Running Time 95 min
Rating PG-13

Software


Learn Italian Now!

An interactive language program, Learn Italian Now! will help you learn the necessary skills to speak Italian. Participate in real conversations, read interesting articles, and watch videos. This program is great for both beginners and those already familiar with the Italian language.


One-Day Italian

Going on vacation or studying abroad? Need to learn a few basic phrases to get you by? The One-Day language learning program will help you do just that. Quickly learn the necessary words and phrases that will help you while abroad. The audio CD comes with a booklet to help users visually recognize words and phrases if desired.


Rosetta Stone - Italian Levels 1 & 2

One of the leaders in language learning software, Rosetta Stone allows you to learn a new language almost effortlessly. The interactive software helps you learn through immersion rather than repetitive memorization. Learn the essential structure needed to help you develop a foundation in the language. Rosetta Stone Software cannot be checked out and is for in-lab use only.


Rosetta Stone Audio Companion - Italian Level 1

Need to learn a language but don't have time to use a computer program? The Rosetta Stone Audio Companion is an audio CD that you can bring anywhere to develop your language skills. Each CD contains several different units that help reinforce pronunciation, vocabulary, and basic phrases. Unlike the software component, the Audio Companion can be taken out of the lab.


Tell Me More - Italian

Whether you're a beginner or just looking to improve your vocabulary, Tell Me More is a great tool to help you develop your language skills. With hundreds of hours of language practice and thousands of exercises, you'll be on your way to learning a new language in no time.

Television

Rai Italia
 

Channel on SMC TV: 62

 

Description: Television proposals by Rai International include a selection of the best programmes broadcast by Rai Uno, Rai Due and Rai Tre (paying particular attention to important events, entertainment and information) and original productions independently created by the network for Italians living abroad, for all those who have family ties with our country or viewers who wish to know more about Italy.

 

 

 

Web-Based Resources

Web-Based Software

Mango Languages LogoMango Languages is available free to all Saint Michael's students, faculty, and staff in a number of languages. Each Mango lesson is focused on practical, common conversation skills and includes instruction on vocabulary, pronunciation, grammar, and culture.

For assistance with Mango, please see Getting Started with Mango Languages.

 

Powerspeak Logo Includes a combination of scored online activities, exercises, lessons and games. Course activities include an adventure story containing graphics, audio, video and an intuitive way to track learning progress. Learners are also challenged to practice speaking and writing in a variety of interactive modules designed to simulate real conversations with native speakers.

For assistance with Powerspeak, please see the Getting Started with Powerspeak guide.

Saint Michaelís is now offering online accounts to use Rosetta Stone, a leader in language learning software. While the LLRC still has Rosetta Stone software available in the lab, this software can be used anywhere, anytime! Interested in learning more? Click here to get started.

 

 

Web-Based Links


About.com: Italian

 Assorted links and writings on learning Italian.

 
BBC Languages — Italian

BBC Language is an online base language learning software that offers resources for Chinese, Spanish, French, English, and many more languages. Learn the basics of 36 different languages and the culture as well!

 
Cyber Italian

 In-depth study of the Italian language. Free trial available, but paid membership is required when the trial expires.

 
Global Road Warrior

Use this database to get acclimated to a country's business culture and etiquette (greetings & courtesies, ethics, meetings, attire), society and culture (gift giving, food, media, time & punctuality) and travel tips (money & banking, transportation, and more) for 175 countries.

 
R-O-matic Italian/English Dictionary

 Online Italian/English dictionary.