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What languages can you speak?

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  1. chesebert
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by fatko /img/forum/go_quote.gif
    The Hong Kong Basic Law states that the official languages are "Chinese and English." It does not explicitly specify the standard for "Chinese". While Standard Mandarin and Simplified Chinese characters are used as the spoken and written standards in mainland China, Cantonese and Traditional Chinese characters are the long-established de facto standards in Hong Kong.

    btw, as i have said so , it is complicated...
    [​IMG]




    I understand Cantonese is a dialect of the Chinese language; I am not contesting that point. What I am contesting is that people claming different dialects as if they were wholly seperate languages, which they are not.

    So which part of the word "Chinese" should I take away to mean "its not really Chinese, but Cantonese, Shanghainese, and etc"?

    And as far as I can tell from the map, HK is still part of the China mainland (unlike Taiwan), unless it has seperated itself and formed its own island since the last time I checked (a whole 2 min ago).
     
  2. fatko
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Mr. Tadashi /img/forum/go_quote.gif
    Well to quote wikipedia it can be argued that Chinese is a reference to a language family as it can be argued the other way around .

    Chinese language - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia




    anyway, Chinese characters are somehow difficult to remember , even for a native speaker, i always forget how to write ...[​IMG]
     
  3. Mr. Tadashi
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by fatko /img/forum/go_quote.gif
    anyway, Chinese characters are somehow difficult to remember , even for a native speaker, i always forget how to write ...[​IMG]



    Tell me about it. I can only recognize about 200 charters and write about 100
     
  4. RYCeT Contributor
    Cantonese is a local language. China has many local language, eventhough they share the same writing, the pronounciation is completely different. It's not a different dialect. Eventhough I don't speak mandarin but I've been exposed to mandarin, cantonese, hokkien, teochew and etc. Each language is different completely. Eventhough English from british accent, american accent, australian accent have their differences in dialect but if you listened closely you can understand it since it's English, not that case in Mandarin, Cantonese, Hokkien, etc. In English, a book is a book in British, American, Australian or even singlish, however a book in mandarin, cantonese, hokkien are different.
    It's the same in Indonesia, Indonesian is the official language however they have traditional language in each locals. They have Javanese, Maduranese, Sundanese, Balinese, Batak, Dayak, ambonese, which each are different language completely.
     
  5. fatko
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Mr. Tadashi /img/forum/go_quote.gif
    Tell me about it. I can only recognize about 200 charters and write about 100



    what do you know how many character you can recognize? by test? [​IMG]
     
  6. chesebert
    ok..so how do you define 'language'?

    just voice sounds? or does it include gestures and written symbols; or perhaps its a combination?

    and btw, I cannot understand Singlish; it's def not English; and I can't understand the getto African American English...that's def another language.
     
  7. chesebert
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by RYCeT /img/forum/go_quote.gif
    Cantonese is a local language. China has many local language, eventhough they share the same writing, the pronounciation is completely different. It's not a different dialect. Eventhough I don't speak mandarin but I've been exposed to mandarin, cantonese, hokkien, teochew and etc. Each language is different completely. Eventhough English from british accent, american accent, australian accent have their differences in dialect but if you listened closely you can understand it since it's English, not that case in Mandarin, Cantonese, Hokkien, etc. In English, a book is a book in British, American, Australian or even singlish, however a book in mandarin, cantonese, hokkien are different.
    It's the same in Indonesia, Indonesian is the official language however they have traditional language in each locals. They have Javanese, Maduranese, Sundanese, Balinese, Batak, Dayak, ambonese, which each are different language completely.




    book is still a book no matter which dialect you use; different extrinsic pronunciation doesn't mean what's pronounced is not the same thing.

    Notwithstanding Cantonese, Shanghainese is NOT a different language just like Suzhounese is not a different language; Ningbonese, Hangzhounese, Nanjingnese, Ninghainese, Wenzhounese, are all Chinese, despite the fact that fluent in one is irrelevent in the understanding of another. And the fact that these places are seperated by merely hours of driving distance further proves that different pronunciation of the same language to the point of incomprehansion, is not a yardstick by which we measure whether its a different language.
     
  8. RYCeT Contributor
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by chesebert /img/forum/go_quote.gif
    ok..so how do you define 'language'?

    just voice sounds? or does it include gestures and written symbols; or perhaps its a combination?

    and btw, I cannot understand Singlish; it's def not English; and I can't understand the getto African American English...that's def another language.




    If they spell it slowly and clearly you'll understand it because regardless "a book is a book". Chesebert, do you speak mandarin or have you been exposed to both mandarin and cantonese? I understand bits & pieces of mandarin but have been exposed to both. Even if you understand mandarin, you won't understand a thing they say in cantonese. It's the same as Indonesian, I understand Indonesian and Javanese but I'll be completely lost if someone speak sundanese or maduranese to me.
    Chinese can read some of Japanese Kanji because Kanji coming from chinese writing however to say they (chinese) understand Japanese is completely wrong.
     
  9. RYCeT Contributor
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by chesebert /img/forum/go_quote.gif
    book is still a book no matter which dialect you use; different extrinsic pronunciation doesn't mean what's pronounced is not the same thing.



    yes a book is still a book eventhough you are spanish, french, italian or English, so should we call all of them the same language then [​IMG]
    I don't understand japanese or mandarin but there should be a thing in Kanji which can be read by both mandarin speaker and Japanese speaker, shared the same meaning but wholly different pronounciation. So in this case will you say Japanese is one of Mandarin dialect. It's the same case as cantonese. If you do want to learn, find someone from hongkong and ask him to say 'how are you?' in mandarin and cantonese. You will hear different language completely but if you're happy trolling, you've made your point.
     
  10. chesebert
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by RYCeT /img/forum/go_quote.gif
    If they spell it slowly and clearly you'll understand it because regardless "a book is a book". Chesebert, do you speak mandarin or have you been exposed to both mandarin and cantonese? I understand bits & pieces of mandarin but have been exposed to both. Even if you understand mandarin, you won't understand a thing they say in cantonese. It's the same as Indonesian, I understand Indonesian and Javanese but I'll be completely lost if someone speak sundanese or maduranese to me.
    Chinese can read some of Japanese Kanji because Kanji coming from chinese writing however to say they (chinese) understand Japanese is completely wrong.




    So what's the purpose of language? to communicate, to say it simply.

    So the question is can a person speaking 'Cantonese' communciate with a person speaking 'Shanghainese'?

    Well, your natural answer is no, because they sound different and they can't understand, therefore they are different languages. However, communicate is not only relegated to oral/spoken; what if one person wrote down what he said? well that changes everything; now the person speaking Shanghainese can understand the Cantonese speaker perfectly.

    This is unlike your example of German and English. Sure as an English speaker you can probably pick out words in German here and there, but let's not fool ourself into thinking understand few words equates comprehension; so naturally German and English are 2 different language, because there is no way for a person speaking English to communicate perfectly with another speaking German.

    And if we frame our understanding under the rubric of communication, then Cantonese and Shanghainese is the same language; just spoken differently.
     
  11. Mr. Tadashi
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by fatko /img/forum/go_quote.gif
    what do you know how many character you can recognize? by test? [​IMG]



    When I studied Japanese in High School I had to learn to read about 200 charters and write them.(I also took a language proficiency test) Well over time I managed to improve my speaking ability in Japanese but, since I rarely ever write anything my writing ability in Japanese has gone down hill. Aside from that I managed to pick up a lot on the trips I took to Japan.
     
  12. chesebert
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by RYCeT /img/forum/go_quote.gif
    So in this case will you say Japanese is one of Mandarin dialect. It's the same case as cantonese. If you do want to learn, find someone from hongkong and ask him to say 'how are you?' in mandarin and cantonese. You will hear different language completely but if you're happy trolling, you've made your point.



    NO. even in their written form, they are different; more specifically, the meaning of the words are different, the sentence structures are different, and most importantly the ways their are communicated are different. Same character, like the same letter, does not equate the same language. The nexus of language is communication; can you communicate?
     
  13. fatko
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by chesebert /img/forum/go_quote.gif
    So what's the purpose of language? to communicate, to say it simply.

    So the question is can a person speaking 'Cantonese' communciate with a person speaking 'Shanghainese'?

    Well, your natural answer is no, because they sound different and they can't understand, therefore they are different languages. However, communicate is not only relegated to oral/spoken; what if one person wrote down what he said? well that changes everything; now the person speaking Shanghainese can understand the Cantonese speaker perfectly.

    This is unlike your example of German and English. Sure as an English speaker you can probably pick out words in German here and there, but let's not fool ourself into thinking understand few words equates comprehension; so naturally German and English are 2 different language, because there is no way for a person speaking English to communicate perfectly with another speaking German.

    And if we frame our understanding under the rubric of communication, then Cantonese and Shanghainese is the same language; just spoken differently.




    Strickly speaking, written Chinese is in another format ....
    If they both write down what they speak out from his mouth, i am sure they still cant understand each others

    YOU in Shanghainese is 儂
    YOU in Cantonese is 你
    HE in Mandarin is 他
    HE in Cantonese is 佢
     
  14. RYCeT Contributor
    Quote this from Cantonese Wikipedia

    Quote:

    A more drastic example is the character (學), pronounced *ɣæwk in Middle Chinese. Its modern pronunciations in Cantonese, Hakka, Taiwanese,Vietnamese, Korean, and Japanese are "hok6", "hok8" (pinjim), "ha̍k" (Pe̍h-ōe-jī), học (although a Sino-Vietnamese word, it is used in daily vocabulary), "hak" (Sino-Korean), and "gaku" (Sino-Japanese), respectively, while the pronunciation in Mandarin is xué



    Same writing, can be read in Mandarin, Cantones, Hakka, Taiwanese, Vietnamese, Korean and Japanese with a different pronounciation for each language. Will you say Vietnamese, Korean and Japanese is one of mandarin dialect now?
     
  15. fatko
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by chesebert /img/forum/go_quote.gif
    NO. even in their written form, they are different; more specifically, the meaning of the words are different, the sentence structures are different, and most importantly the ways their are communicated are different. Same character, like the same letter, does not equate the same language. The nexus of language is communication; can you communicate?



    The sentence structure between Cantonese and Mandarin has a slight different too.
    The meaning of words are also different , but some meaning are shared.
    Are you a Chinese? you seem like a Linguist!
    [​IMG]
     
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