Tag Archives: Language

How hard is Chinese, really?

When I tell people in the US that I can speak Chinese the usual response is shock and amazement that someone could learn such a difficult language. Of course I must always disabuse them of any fantasies that my Chinese … Continue reading

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You say dialect, I say language….

The Yiddish linguist Max Weinreich famously penned: “אַ שפּראַך איז אַ דיאַלעקט מיט אַן אַרמיי און פֿלאָט” I could try to impress you and pretend I can read that. Maybe if we write it this way: “语言是有陆军及海军的方言” To cut to … Continue reading

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Do you speak English?

Unfortunately the answer all too often is “Ting bu dong.” (I don’t understand) But then we must always remember, this is their country, not ours. Just as we expect the whole world to speak English within 10 minutes of their … Continue reading

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Off the Beaten Path in China

We all know about the most famous – and justifiably so – sites across China: the Forbidden City, the Terracotta Warriors and Horses, the Shanghai Bund. Indeed their fame is such that a wide variety of travel packages attempt to … Continue reading

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