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Difficulty in pronouncing French?

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Joined: April 12th, 2017 3:10 pm

Difficulty in pronouncing French?

Postby elizabethmunk684_86522 » April 12th, 2017 3:19 pm

I have just started learning french. I am still in the basic level and I am thinking of attending a french school in the summer to learn the language better. The most challenging part that I face is pronouncing the words properly. I have heard that reading aloud works. I have already bought some books and I am planning on reading it. I always get confused with the "u" sound. I always find it hard to properly distinguish between the "u" and "ou" sound. If anybody could help me out with this, it would be great.

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Re: Difficulty in pronouncing French?

Postby community.french » April 26th, 2017 6:24 am

Bonjour Elisabeth !

French students may be confused with the French U, that is quite different from the english one. French has two "u vowels", written respectively with a single letter u and with the combination o + u = ou
The U sound is always spelled U and the OU sound is always spelled OU, so they are easy to tell apart in writing.
The French u and ou vowels are essentially distinguished by the position of the tongue: in u, the tongue is held far forward in the mouth. With ou, the tongue is pulled towards the back of the mouth.
To pronounce U : put your lips as if you want to whistle. At the same time, try to pronounce the English /ee/ sound (as in see).
The frenc OU is pronounced more or less like the “ou” in "soup”.
For example : C’est le mur, c’est l’amour. (It’s a wall; it’s love). Mur is pononced with the U sound and amour with the OU.

I hope it's clear !
Thank you
Marie Alice
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