What is the term for the condition of not being able to read, write, or even speak a particular language, but only being able to understand the auditory form of a language. For example, a boy could only understand Chinese in auditory form, but he replies to his parents in English.
If a person can understand verbal communication in a language but can neither read nor write, he would be considered illiterate in that language.
Many people who begin to study a language find understanding verbal communication easier than speaking it. At first, speaking requires retrieving words from memory.