As the globe shrinks (the name for a new soap opera?), we’re challenged more and more to speak in unfamiliar tongues. And the problem becomes getting that chunky or deceptive bit of foreign prose out of our mouths with something less than extreme prejudice. How do you say Löwenbräu, risotto, Lech Wałęsa, Eyjafjallajökull, or even Советских, come to that? Heck, most of us can’t even say Moscow properly in English.
You might be adept at decoding IPA, the international phonetic alphabet — and there’s a good argument we all should be — in which case you can learn fairly easily from your handy phrase book that it’s [ˈløːvənbʁɔʏ] and not [ˈloʊ.ənbraʊ]. But that’s not going to cut it for most of us most of the time.
If you simply want to hear Catalan or Tibetan or Ojibwa, you can go to a language page and “play” the words you find there. There’s no translation, mind you: but that makes sense, given that each word would need 240 translations; and it’s okay because there’s an app for that, doubtless. Should you happen to be skilled in Basque or Igbo or any of the globe’s thousands of languages, you can contribute pronunciations or even become an editor.