Author, pilot, manager, university professor, ceramist, busboy, waiter… those are some of the hats Dr. Jacques Bourgeacq has worn in his colorful and distinguished career. Born and raised in France during the German occupation, Jacques had to move to Madagascar in 1946 with his family, where he attended a Jesuit high school. Short of graduating, he dropped out of school to enlist in the military and trained as a French Air Force Pilot.
In the 1950s, a young Jacques traveled to the United States to train as a fighter pilot with the U.S. Air Force and then to Morocco to become a flying instructor. He completed his 5-year military tour in France and then moved with his American wife and a baby to the United States.
Unable to find work as a civil aviation pilot in the U.S., and not having completed his high school education, Jacques went from working in the sky to the busy work of waiting on patrons and cleaning tables at restaurants. His stay in the U.S. was not very long, though, as Jacques went on to work first as an administrative assistant and then as an air traffic controller in the Belgian Congo. Unfortunately, a year into his stay in the Congo his wife died during childbirth. Left with a three-year old child in the middle of Africa, he thought it best to rejoin his family in France for some time.
Jacques returned to the U.S. with his young son whilst still in his early twenties, got his high school diploma and began attending college. He also remarried and after a few years of hard work and unwavering dedication, Jacques became a Doctor of Philosophy and had a distinguished career as a university professor at the University of Iowa. He retired in 2003 and focused on his writing and ceramic work.
With the Côte à côte series, Jacques aims at enabling students of French as a second language who are native English speakers to think and express themselves the way native speakers of French do it, culturally and structurally. This “natural” approach to enhancing language skills comprises tools where comparative grammar and semantic framework underlie concepts and activities that help students successfully internalize and correctly use authentic French.
Côte à côte (Side by Side) is a contrasting language proficiency enhancement method that highlights cultural and structural variations in English and French. This book helps students by presenting a juxtaposition of both languages, using translation exercises to aid in language analysis, internalization of atypical words and phrases, and ultimately written and verbal composition.
In this second volume in the Côte à côte series, Côte à côte 2: Le français tel qu'on le pense, Dr. Bourgeacq pursues his comparative approach to language learning by pointing out structural differences between English and French that often correspond to variations in logic and vision, and have a distinct cultural connection. This very effective approach, emphasizing the "why" and the "how" of language differences, aims to provide the inquisitive learner with an added tool on the path to true near-native fluency. While the book is not designed to train translators, it uses the juxtaposition of both languages, namely frequent translation exercises, as an effective tool for studying language patterns.