Language Hacking Mandarin: A Conversation Course for Beginners

Language Hacking Mandarin: A Conversation Course for Beginners

Benny Lewis, Dr. Licheng Gu


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Crack the Code and Get Fluent Faster!

"I had to learn [a new language] in a handful of days for a TV interview. I asked Benny for help and his advice was invaluable."
- Tim Ferriss

What if you could skip the years of study and jump right to speaking Mandarin? Sound Crazy? No, it's language hacking. It's about learning what's indispensable, skipping what's not - and using what you've learned to have real conversations in Mandarin - from day one!

Unlike most traditional language courses that try to teach you the rules of a language, Language Hacking Mandarin shows you how to learn and speak Mandarin immediately through proven memory techniques, unconventional shortcuts and conversation strategies perfect by one of the world's greatest language learners, Benny Lewis, aka the Irish Polyglot.

The Method

Language Hacking takes a modern approach to language learning, blending the power of online social collaboration and the 80/20 principle of learning (Benny's ten #languagehacks show you how to achieve more with less!). It focuses on the conversations and language that learners need to master right away, rather than presenting language in the order of difficulty like most courses. This means you can start having conversations immediately.

Course Features
Each of the 10 units culminates with a speaking mission that you can choose to share on the italki Language Hacking learner community ( where you can give and get feedback and extend your learning beyond the pages of the book.

You don't need to go abroad to learn a language any more.


Benny Lewis:
Irish native Benny Lewis speaks over ten languages - all self-taught. In 2003, he spoke only one language: English. After university, he moved to Spain and was soon frustrated that he could not speak Spanish after six months of studying. So he decided to abandon traditional learning approaches and just start speaking - and everything changed. Today Benny is known as The Irish Polyglot and speaks Mandarin Chinese, Arabic, French, German, Spanish, Italian, Portuguese, and Hungarian. He is the author of the bestselling book on language learning, Fluent in 3 months. He also runs the largest language learning blog in the world,, where he breaks down the language learning process for busy people. Lewis is a full-time 'language hacker', and devotes his time to finding better, faster, and more efficient ways to learn languages. For the first time, he has applied his methods to helping people learn specific languages in his new Language Hacking series.

Dr. Licheng Gu is a professor of Chinese language instruction at Northwestern University. Besides numerous articles and book chapters, Professor Gu has published three books in the field of teaching Chinese as a foreign language: Picture Characters: Learning Chinese through Pictographs in 2006, "Learning Chinese with Lulu and Maomao" in 2008, and "An Analysis of Chinese Teaching in American Universities: Its Past, Present, and Future" in 2019. He is highly recognized in Chinese language teacher training at home and abroad. Thanks for this contribution to the field, he is invited to serve as Visiting Professor at Beijing Language and Culture University. Professor Gu is also the China Liaison in the Office of Vice President for International Relations of Northwestern University.