Author: pnp

Are The Chinese Losing Their Ability To Write Chinese? [Copy link] 中文

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Post time 2017-11-28 14:09:47 |Display all floors
pnp Post time: 2017-11-28 12:21
It would be a real pity if, through reliance on the modern cellphone, the Chinese lose their abilit ...
Chinese characters are not just like the words of other more modern languages [...] it's value lies in its historical past and ancient civilization


But is the value of those characters in their heritage to Chinese civilization, or in the modern population's ability to write them? Those are two different things, in my opinion.

In fact I would argue that Chinese characters will increase in such intangible value, if they stopped being used in everyday life.

After all, this development would (or should not) not be another cultural revolution, where old practises would be forced to be abandoned at gunpoint.

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Post time 2017-11-28 15:48:03 |Display all floors
Jaaja Post time: 2017-11-28 14:09
But is the value of those characters in their heritage to Chinese civilization, or in the modern ...

If a people lose their ability to write their own language, they lose their culture!  That has already happened to the American Indians, surely China must not go down that path.

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Post time 2017-11-28 16:52:11 |Display all floors
pnp Post time: 2017-11-28 15:48
If a people lose their ability to write their own language, they lose their culture!  That has alr ...
write their own language, they lose their culture!  That has already happened to the American Indians


Culture is more than a written language, especially since now we are only talking about handwriting that language, not losing the language as whole.

American Indians (most of them) have lost their languages completely (speaking, reading, writing), not only their handwritten form. And language is far from the only part of their culture that has been lost.

Chinese language is not in danger of similar destiny.

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Post time 2017-11-28 19:34:11 |Display all floors
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Post time 2017-11-29 09:40:21 |Display all floors
pnp Post time: 2017-11-28 12:21
It would be a real pity if, through reliance on the modern cellphone, the Chinese lose their abilit ...
it has great cultural and historic values, having evolved from pictures carved on stones, then on bamboo, etc


Also I want to add, that what we are talking about now is a next step in this evolution - going from pen and paper to mobile devices. In terms of technological development, this is no different than going from carving to drawing.

This is part of arrogance of current generations that I referred to before. What right do we have to decide that our current culture is the peak of whatever culture we live in?

It is of course true that (as far as I know) most popular methods to input Chinese characters in electronic devices rely on Pinyin, and in that way knowledge of writing Chinese characters will disappear. But it will only disappear from everyday use of the masses, not from the Chinese civilization.

Secondly, who is to blame that there is no popular way of inputting Chinese characters to electronic devices in their original drawn forms? Is it the Chinese engineers' failure of not being able to produce such? Or who introduced Pinyin to begin with?

Or perhaps, is the written Chinese simply not suitable for electronic use like that? Could enforcing it to be written in Chinese characters be actually counterproductive - people would instead switch to English for that purpose, which would affect future of Chinese language as whole, not only its handwriting future.

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Post time 2017-11-29 11:30:57 |Display all floors
Jaaja Post time: 2017-11-28 16:52
Culture is more than a written language, especially since now we are only talking about handwrit ...

"Chinese language is not in danger of similar destiny."

They have already embarked on the first step towards that destiny!

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Post time 2017-11-29 12:21:00 |Display all floors
pnp Post time: 2017-11-29 11:30
"Chinese language is not in danger of similar destiny."

They have already embarked on the first s ...

No, they have not. They have embarked on next step in development from carving -> paper - > typewriter -> mobile device

I'm sure that when paper and pen was first invented, the old generations who used carving to write text were as suspicious as you are now.

This is not about evolution or loss of the language, but evolution of technology to write it.

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