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Is it "Chinglish"? ---I don't tink so!

Popularity 6Viewed 5277 times 2014-5-24 09:27 |System category:Life| Chinglish

   I will always be fascinated by beautiful English sentences, such as:

 

   Since your ship was first launched upon the sea of life you have never been still for a single moment; the sea is too deep, you could not find an anchorage if you would; there can be no pause until you come into port.

 

   All white save the river, that marked its course by a winding black line across the landscape; and the leafless trees, that against the leaden sky now revealed more fully the wonderful beauty and intricacies of their branches.

 

   From a biological standpoint, human life almost reads like a poem. It has its own rhythm and beat, its internal cycles of growth and decay.

 

   Etc.

 

   Upon entering the high school, I had been fed up with writing plain and ordinary sentences which shows little imagination or thinking. I tried to use some imaginative rhetoric just as I was writing a composition in Chinese. But as a result, my English teacher in her fifties, who is said to be experienced but in my view a little stubborn and conservative, referred to my compositions as “Chinglish”. This kind of circumstances was numerous; I remember quarreling with her for a couple of times. (I’m sorry for this; it is partly due to the conceit I had got then. But I still think she’s a little conservative even now.)

    Content of what we quarrel about is mostly forgotten, but one remains distinct. I wrote once: “Every time......I’ll sank into deeper and deeper darkness”, meaning a stage of depression I got into in a figurative sense. It’s somewhat poetic in Chinese. However it was not understandable to others, my teacher said. Yet I could not change this habit of using my imagination, as if not, I would loss the interest in writing in English. Actually on the whole, I still got better grades in writing then than my fellow classmates.

 

 

   Now I’m in college; we don’t have much time communicating with our English teacher, and assignments are no longer much. Some days ago, our teacher recommended us a website to improve our writing skills. Compositions are examined by computer, or manual work if you like. I got 87 with a full mark of 100. Not too bad. But as I looked at the mistakes it pointed out to me, I was confused. It considered some phrases in my composition such as “a bible for life”, “those wisdom of the past”,“the interaction between their heart”, “marvelous declaration”, “endless inspiration” as mistakes because they’re not in store in the system, and suspected them as “Chinglish”.

 

 

   It seems to have put human brain in an inferior stage to a computer system, ignoring its imagination and flexibility. There may be some mistakes in my sentences, I admit, but I’ll never regard this mechanic method as a good way to improve our English writing. On the contrary, it kills creativity and interest English may arouse in students’ mind.

 

   Are those phrases and sentences really “Chinglish”? Passers-by of my blog, please help me if you would. And will you have such problems where you think what you write is right but is regarded as “Engnese”(English Chinese) or “Chinglish”?

 

(Opinions of the writer in this blog don't represent those of China Daily.)


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Reply Report seanboyce88 2014-5-28 18:59
Maierwei: I haven't      I'm so "uncool" in terms of following the popular books&films... But will give The Game of Thrones a chance!
the books are really good actually...of course it's only my opinion. he has no fear of killing off a loved character, very enjoyable

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  • Is it "Chinglish"? ---I don't tink so! 2014-5-29 15:06

    seanboyce88: I agree, it may be way too over the top for such a situation...but GRAMMATICALLY speaking it's not wrong. In mick's own words "it isn't good gram ...
    No, it's only correct in that it was used as an adjective to describe something. It was, however, incorrect in the context in which it was used.

    No one who has witnessed the execution of a serial killer would describe it as being a 'happy execution' yet the relatives of the victims may well have felt this emotion at seeing, in their eyes, justice being done.

    Ballet could never be described as 'breathtaking' though a particular performance might well deserve such an accolade. Similarly, it would be the performance of a play that would merit such praise, not the play itself.

    It is my understanding that you were born in the UK and that English is your first language. This entitles you to have a private opinion on the use of English but by no means qualifies you to lecture others on what is or isn't correct grammar especially those with many years of studying this wonderful language and who may rejoice in the title of a Master of English.

    You have opined that 'English is a descriptive language' and, whilst this is indeed true, it is also an accurate and concise language in that there is a word for almost everything. e.g. would you say that you are scared of heights or would you use the correct term and say that you are afraid of heights? The difference is there for a reason and that is to express exactly that which is intended to be understood.

    Shame on you, lad, for such ignorance of your own language.

  • Is it "Chinglish"? ---I don't tink so! 2014-5-28 18:59

    Maierwei: I haven't      I'm so "uncool" in terms of following the popular books&films... But will give The Game of Thrones a chance!
    the books are really good actually...of course it's only my opinion. he has no fear of killing off a loved character, very enjoyable

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