Author: thestud

Changing China: the evolving Chinese dialects [Copy link] 中文

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Post time 2004-8-30 20:19:40 |Display all floors

Reply: gtnbia

I have limited knowledge on western history, however, my limited western knowledge may help you to understand China history.

I have to say it is pitty that many civilizations are disappearing, include the ones you mentioned, the minorities in remote areas in China. Actually we should say in any corner of the world, many civilizations are disappearing.

So, blaming other civilizations? You can do that, but it may not be a wise thing to do.

When Greece and Rome created glory civilizations, other part of Europ was still nomadic tribes, or not even normadic -- swing on trees. Creek and Roman invaded them and they invaded Greek and Roman, of course they killed each other. However, the saverges (sorry for using this word) learnt the civilizations from Greece and Rome, and they became civilized, and then they developped European civilization.

Greek and Roman were guilty? They eliminated so many forrest cultures? No one would say so.

The history in China was some kind of similar -- normadic tribes invaded China, China invaded them, and they became part of China culture. Some other tribals were became part of China and China culture by assimilation, not by wars.

Most of the minorities in China became part of China and China culture from Han dynasty, by wars and by culture assimilation. "Chinese" is not an ethnic concept, is a culture concept, this is the differenct part from European history.

It is true that many minorities in SW China are closer to SE Asian than to Chinese ethnically, then what? I am much closer to Mongolian than to the Chinese in central China ethnically, then I should be a Mongolian or Russian? Or someone should feel guilty to me?

I don't think the word of "unification" contains anything other than unification. IF you know China history in more detail, you should find that when China became weak, separated, the people were suffering; when China unified, the people enjoyed much better life. It was a common understanding in China history, the ones who separated the country, is for his personal power, will, and wealth, and people suferred from the separation.

Your understanding on unification could be correct on other part of the world, but not applicable to China.

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Post time 2004-8-30 20:31:41 |Display all floors


You may tell me that China should respect the right of independence of the minorities, and so many European countries are respect each other and enjoy happy life. This is the argument happened in few forums include CD.

The thing is, Europ suffered many wars in past 3000 years (much more than the wars in China), it formed the reality that many small countries in Europ. The 3000 years history keeps telling Europeans -- France is France, Germany is Germany, we are all different. Well, they forgot it sometimes, so WWI and WWII happened.

China and East Asia was very much different, if you want a same style East Asia as current Europ, then you are bring wars to here, may not be 3000 years wars, but at least 100 years.

We don't like war.

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Post time 2004-8-30 21:16:04 |Display all floors

reply to luf

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Post time 2004-8-30 21:58:45 |Display all floors


In Qin Dynasty, most part of the current southern China was not in Qin's boundary, including current provinces of  Jiang Xi, Fujian, Guang Xi, Yunnan, Gui Zhou, part of Hunan, and most part of Guang Dong.

The minorities in this part of land was called "Bai Yue", were many tropical or mountain tribes, small kindoms.

I remember an event in Qin dynasty was "in Bai Yue", which means " suppress the invasion of Bai Yue". It doesn't mean this land was conquered by Qin, it only mean that a war there between Qin and those tropical and maintain tribes or kindoms.

I was not trying to say no other civilizations in ancient Europ other than Greece and Rome, I was saying that civilizations are communicating each other, and keep changing, some old cultures may looked disappeared, but actually some new and better culture appearing.

In China history, many races gave up their nomade life style and learn the way of life and culture from China, and then became Chinese, we can name such races easily such as Xiang Bei, South Xongnu, some Manchu before Qing dynasty, and all Manchu in Qing Dynasty.......They became Chinese not by war, but by culture and civilization spreading.

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Post time 2004-8-30 22:11:16 |Display all floors


My reply to you got disappeared, hope Mods put it back soon.

I know the languages in this part of China is much closer to SE Asia countries. Cantonese speak similar to Vietnamese, Dai speaks similar to Thai.

Vietnam (as well as Korea, Japan) used Chinese written language for thousand years, it is nothing wrong that there are some similarity in languages.

I read a news few years ago that Thai prime Minister said their forefathers were from China 800 years ago. I don't know the detail of this history, but it is not surprise.

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Post time 2004-8-30 22:18:53 |Display all floors

Reply: gtnbia

In Qin dynasty, the follwoing southern China provinces were not in China boudary yet:
Most part of Jiang Xi, Fujian, Half of Guang Dong, half of Hunan, Guang Xi, Yunnan, Gui Zhou.

I was not saying no any other cultures in Europ in Greece and Rome time, and I agree that many advanced culture was treated as savages by other cultures by some funny reasons.

What I want to say was, some advanced civilization assamilited other cultures, it is not necessarily bad thing.

In China history, many other races, cultures assimilated by China culture without wars, such as many tribes in Southern China, south Xongnu, Xianbei, some Manchu....

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Post time 2004-8-31 01:40:54 |Display all floors

Thank you for your compliment and contributions to this thread, luf2004

Below was my reply to gaytnbia on Qin's unification:



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  To gtnbia who thinks the African Eve and the blacks today belong to the same race

<<And I'm sure that people 2,200 years ago fell for that as well. "It's not empire building, it's unification!" >>

What is the difference between Qin Shihuangdi's unification and amefrrriKKKa's occupation of Iraq?

Well, for someone who can't tell the difference between the African Eve and today's blacks because both have dark skins, the above question is understandably a hard one.

Qin's unification was a great achievement, after which China is considered the seat of a single, self-concious civilization. However, such an outcome was preceded by numerous earlier signs, such as inter-kingdom migration and cultural diffusion. Many parts of China had seen cultures evolving into civilization well before the middle of the first millennium BC. By the end of Warring States some of them showed marked similarities offsetting the difference between them. Political unity achieved by Qin was the logical corollary of a cultural unfication that had already gone far.

Can the same be said of the evil war of greed that is ongoing in Iraq?


2004-08-12 00:32


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