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Share The Difficulty of Translating Classical Chinese Into English
2017-3-12 11:38
One way to get a sense of the difference between Chinese and English is to look at different English translations of classical Chinese works like the Dao De Jing. Of course, there is a big difference between classical literary Chinese and modern conversational Chinese, but the literary Chinese contains the essence of Chinese wisdom, so it still tells us something when you look at how differently different translators interpret it. Here are some examples. These are different translations ...
7148 views|2 comments Popularity 1
Share JAPANESE AND CHINESE PT 2: The Japanese Writing System
2017-3-12 05:36
Why does Japanese writing contain Chinese characters? And what are all the odd squiggles around the character in the sentence? The answer to the first question is actually simple. The Japanese at a certain point in history decided that they needed a writing system, and since they were copying so many other features of Chinese culture, apparently it seemed natural to them to copy Chinese writing. The answer to the second question is based on knowing something about the Japanese la ...
3836 views|0 comments Popularity 1
Share JAPANESE AND CHINESE - PART 1: Are Japanese and Chinese Related?
2017-3-12 05:30
Recently I read a post on CD that speculated on the reason why Japanese writing contains Chinese characters (mixed with otherwise unintelligible writing): that Japan was originally populated by migrants from China, and that they carried some memory of Chinese characters with them. Although it is probably likely that Japan was originally populated by migrants from China, that is not the explanation for why Chinese characters are part of Japanese writing. The Chinese and Japanese languages ...
3313 views|0 comments
Share Chinese Language Learning and the Brain
2017-2-23 10:19
As a teacher and educator and linguist (having a degree in Linguistics, the science of language) I have long been interested in how the brain learns, and especially how the brain learns language. Of course, one can learn a lot about this subject by observing one's own learning and thinking processes. Many years ago, in college, I took one year of Chinese. Although the Chinese I learned was limited, it gave me the opportunity to experience how differently the brain processes ideographic an ...
3578 views|0 comments Popularity 1
Share Understanding Phonemes
2017-2-22 02:38
This blog is for people whose aim is to speak and converse orally in English. When I teach immigrants to the USA to speak English, oral conversation is their most important priority. That is also the most natural way to learn a language, it is how babies learn. But most Chinese will probably have little occasion in their lives to converse with an English speaker, so their priorities and reasons for learning English will be different -- the most important priority wo ...
3590 views|4 comments Popularity 3
Share How to improve English
2017-2-14 09:59
Often people here post the question, "How can I improve my English?" I am an American who has taught TESOL and also who has had the experience of learning several languages as an adult, so I speak from the perspective of both language teacher and language learner. I have decided to start a blog on the subject of improving English. The question "How can I improve my English?" is not specific enough. Improving your speaking, improving your listening comprehension, improving your reading, o ...
2769 views|0 comments
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