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The definition of Chinglish [Copy link] 中文

Rank: 4

Post time 2005-6-8 11:03:38 |Display all floors
There are several threads in this forum that have caused some heated debate over whether Chinglish should be encouraged or not.  After carefully reading each post, I have the feeling that there are different understandings and interpretations on the word "Chinglish" itself. Other than this, I don't see much difference in the debaters' stands.

I have noticed the term "China English", "pidgin English", "irregular English" being used by different debaters. In my opinion, there's no point to debate over something without the same baseline.

So my purpose of starting this thread is to hear your opinions on the definition of these terms, and hopefully the founder of this forum can help to clarify these terms (at least for the usage in this forum). I hope this will help to put our discussion/debate on the same ground.

1. Chinglish
2. China English
3. Pidgin English
4. Irregular English
5. ??

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Rank: 6Rank: 6

Post time 2005-6-8 15:22:37 |Display all floors

i am a chinglish speaker

i have used china english and irregular english in one occasion and chinglish and pidgin english in other occasions.

when i am using the pair of china english and irregular english, i put emphasis on a question: is it built on the rules of the standard english? china english is and irregular english isn't although they both give strong chinese flavors.

for the chinglish and pidgin pair, the emphasis is on the question as to what extend such a thing can still be considered as english. "no three no four" is not english at all. it is gibberish to the ear of a native english speaker and most chinglish speakers. what is chinglish then?

it is a million-people question. each chinese english learner will give a different  answer. the answer is a range in which standard english is mixed with pidgin english, learned english grammar and thoughts are mixed with mother tongue as one's second nature. engagement helps move the equilibrium point towards the standard english end. detachment works in the opposite direction.

a subjective measurement is how much a native english speaker can comprehend my chinese english. if he nods his head frequently, i know my chinese english works, otherwise, i may have given him too many pidgins. in the best situation, if i speak flawless standard english, i made myself a bilingual. however, i know this will always be a dream. over my life, i will be a chinese english speaker working my way from pidgin to the standard as an ideal.

(btw, chinese engish is chinglish: try to read the two words really fast and see what will happen...)

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Post time 2005-6-8 17:25:38 |Display all floors

Thanks for your comments nelyda

I have been reading some of your posts and I have to say that most of them do make sense to me.

So if I understand you correctly, in your interpretation Chinglish (or Chinese English) refers to a mixture of China English (which is English blended with Chinese flavor or cultural background) and irregular English (or Pidgin English, which is either gramatically in error, or doesn't make sense or causes confusions to non-Chinese speakers). If that's the case, I would say thatChina English is all right, but irregular English is not acceptable. Of course we as non-native speakers all speak this kind of Chinglish, if not pure Pidgin English. But it should always be our goal to challenge ourselves and try to eliminate those Pidgin English.

I like what you put as "over my life, i will be a chinese english speaker working my way from pidgin to the standard as an ideal." I believe this is a shared thought among us English learners in China.

So back to the questions I raised in my original post, could we define:
1.Chinglish as a mixture of China English and irregular English (or Pidgin English);
2. China English as English blended with Chinese flavor or cultural background
3. Irregular English as English either gramatically in error, or doesn't make sense or causes confusions to non-Chinese speakers
4. Pidgin English same as irregular English.


Any comments or different opinions are welcome.

P.S.
If the above definitions are accepted, I would rather support to "crack down Pidgin English" in stead of supporting to "crack down Chinglish".

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Post time 2005-6-9 11:44:11 |Display all floors

a follow up

1. chinese english includes both china english and irregular english (used by chinese) with china english as a variant of the standard english

china english is a variant of the standard english that it is built upon the rules of the standard english and able to describe chinese unique concepts. it is the state of the art of chinese english. it is authenticated by bilingual language experts and ready to be included in the international standard english as a (china) variation.  china english is an "official" thing. we as individuals can only make suggestions but have no right to mint the coins.

irregular english is everything in the chinese english realm that is not china english. i used the pair of china english and irregular english for logical reasons. using china english as a standard, we find and eliminate all the irregular to make the city of beijing truly CHINA in the eyes of a visitor from abroad.

2. chinese english is between pidgin english and standard english exclusive of standard english

there is another way to cover the same spectrum of chinese english. that is, chinese english can be viewed as a form of english anywhere between the pidgin and the standard. when i talk about chinese english, i mean the english used by each individual (as opposed to china english which is a variant of the standard therefore not personalized). a chinese english learner starts from pidgin english and matures at near standard. chinese english or chinglish is personalized, depending on the way a person speaks it.

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rovi297 has been deleted
Post time 2005-6-9 15:45:15 |Display all floors

Re: I have been reading some of your posts and I have to say that most of them d

Reminder: Author is prohibited or removed, and content is automatically blocked

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Rank: 6Rank: 6

Post time 2005-6-9 16:33:23 |Display all floors

it was for different purposes. it was targeted to different readers.

not sure if they are too shy to appear here...

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Rank: 4

Post time 2005-6-10 10:32:56 |Display all floors

Thanks rovi297.

However, I have to say that it doesn't make me a "super-master" by winning the translation contest. As a matter of fact, way to go for me to be even closer to that honor!

I think it is necessary for me to clarify that when I say "most of nyleda's posts do make sense to me", I mean the viewpoints and reasonings of his arguements sound right to me. And I hope you could see that my emphasis is on "DO make sense" rather than  on "MOST of his posts". I have no intention to be hostile to anyone in this forum, even though I may have challenged some of the posts. But I believe there's nothing wrong about it since this is the whole purpose of having a forum for anyone to express himself freely.

As a side note, I think you have made a lot of instructive contributions to the forum, and I'm looking forward to seeing more of your enlightening posts.

P.S.  I hope you like the smiley better than my thumb down I gave  you in my other post. :-)

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