LSA/ACLS language books

Beverly Flanigan flanigan at OHIOU.EDU
Tue Jul 23 20:15:19 UTC 2002

The so-called Army Method of teaching foreign languages was developed in
WWII in order to train military personnel (esp. future spies) to speak
"strategic" FLs.  This evolved into the Audio-lingual Method (ALM) used in
high schools and colleges for the next several decades (and even yet in
many places).  Linguists were called upon to write textbooks and train
teachers, and the method developed was based on the descriptive and
contrastive grammar approach common since the Bloomfield era.  Charles
Fries and Robert Lado at the U of Michigan pioneered this new "scientific"
method (Lado's term), and the "applied linguistics" field was born.

The language teaching field has come a long way since then, but you see the
same frantic call now for people who can speak Arabic, Persian, Urdu,
etc.--after many years of ignoring them in FL departments.

At 03:30 PM 7/23/2002 -0400, you wrote:
>The Classics Department, my neighbors here on the 11th floor of McClung
>Tower, are having a book giveaway today. I picked up some Greek texts,
>including a volume called _Spoken Greek_ (Henry Holt, 1945). The verso of
>the title page contains a statement that "The Armed Forces edition of this
>book was published by the Linguistic Society of America and the Intensive
>Language Program of the American Council of Learned Societies." (The
>copyright is 1945, Linguistic Society of America).
>This is part of the history of LSA that I was not familiar with. Were all
>the WWII Armed Forces language books published by LSA/ACLS?

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