A review. Only the most important methods for the generation of organometallic reagents and intermediates are covered in this review. This holds for the reductive insertion of Li into org. halides, the permutational interconversion of org. halides with organolithiums, and the permutational interconversion of hydrocarbons with organolithiums. In addn., 3 special methods are featured, the Brook isomerization, the Shapiro reaction and the sulfoxide-alkyllithium interconversion. These topics have been neglected for a long while, but begin to find now the attention they deserve because of their unexploited potential. [on SciFinder (R)]