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Who is Yip Po-Ching


bluetortilla
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Yes, it's a professional networking site.  There are groups to join regarding careers, skills and so on where you can discuss stuff (I'm in a couple of Chinese teachers' forums, for instance), companies to follow, jobs advertised and, hopefully, mutually useful people to link up with.

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I tried to start reading the Lexicon last night and got confounded at the introduction. It was like reading Chinese, before I learned to read Chinese. I think I might be better off diving into the book proper. Failing that, I'll cut my asking price to £18. 

 

Edit: Couple of posts removed, guidelines on discussion of pirated stuff are in the T&C's

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I thought most of that preview was beautifully written because I thought it was legitimately intricately reasoned, not that he was BSing me; Roddy's clip is not much worse than Kant, but Kant is BS, I thought.

It's been in my wish list for over three years but there has always been something more practical to buy. :-(

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5-7 years?? Eek!  How do some manage it in 3??  I once met someone who polished his off in 18 months!

 

Having said that...

 

Yes, I agree about academic speak.  When you read some academics' articles - even on relatively simple matters, their prose is so tiring!  My old boss used to force me to consult a dictionary almost every time I talked to him (he seemed to talk normally when relaxed and fall into PhD-speak when nervy, from which I can only conclude that I freaked the poor guy old beyond belief!! :mrgreen:), and having read a few things in the Times Higher over the years, I came to the conclusion that the only way some academics could get something published was to confuse both the editorial staff and general readership so much with their high-falutin' mumbo-jumbo that they're able to hide the fact that they really have nothing to say!! :lol:

 

Elizabeth - the stalwart supporter of the Plain English Campaign!  If you have something worth saying, say it clearly so that folk can benefit from it!

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That's maybe in the UK, 3 years in North America would be record time! A UK PhD is somewhere between a North American Masters and PhD in terms of the amount of work required. Scary quote: "The average student takes 8.2 years to get a Ph.D.; in education, that figure surpasses 13 years." (NY Times)

 

There have been a few scandals where fake computer-generated Academic-sounding papers have been accepted to journals or conferences (e.g. in Philosophy, Maths, and Computer Science), probably on the basis that if a paper is totally incomprehensible then it must be worthwhile!

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Yup, that's the UK time and it's normally quite well fenced around.  I mean, plenty of people submit late, but it's the exception, rather than the rule, for someone's PhD to drag on for umpteen years.  It does happen, of course, but most academics want the doctoral student off their hands so they can get on with their own work!! :lol:

 

It would be fascinating to do a comparison of the two systems and see how they really correlate.  The UK student being able to get his PhD by age 24 (although it would often be a year or so later, as most do taught Masters first) is probably a result of their being introduced to gradual specialisation from the tender age of 14 when they pick their GCSE subjects.  If it weren't so off topic.....

 

Tee-hee!  And I thought technical subject writers were clearer than arts ones!  My hubby's stuff is clear - I have to proofread it  :roll:, but some of the arts stuff makes Dr Yip's little beauty as shown above seem right at home. 

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Yes it does vary- in my subject (Finance/Economics) some papers are very readable, and some begin the impenetrable jargon right in the title & abstract.

Yes I went through the UK system and it amazes North Americans how early we have to drop subjects; there's no high school equivalent to the level of specialisation of A-Levels.

Most of the extra time for the PhD is caused by the insistence on published/able work, and many PhDs have 2 years of coursework at the front end!

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Ah! That's very interesting! I thought there must be some sort of taught element etc involved in such long (to me) programmes.  Sir's had one or two things published and hopes to get a few more (he's hoping it will help him break the back of his thesis), but it's more of a 'good/better if you can' rather than 'must'.

 

Either system has its good and bad points, I guess.  The US system scores on breadth and the UK one on depth.  Most foreign lang grads in the UK would start uni at the same sort of level as many US language majors would leave, but they wouldn't have much knowledge of a number of other subjects.各有利弊。

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Anyway, slowly working my way through this. It does get a lot more readable - taking that section from the intro wasn't really fair. So far I've done the first three chapters which are

1) Phonology. This was all pretty standard, interesting to see that under sandhi he includes, ie, the lighter first fourth tone in a two-fourth tone pair, and tone changes on 七、八 before a fourth tone. 

2) Characters. I skimmed this bit even more than I skimmed the rest. It does have a nice classification of radicals - human beings (人、大、子、尢), human body parts (身、文、寸), through to nature and clothing and plants. On the problem of polyphony - phonetic components actually mapping to more than one pronunciation - he does say that simplification may have actually worsened things, which might have enlightened that other discussion we had about that recently. 

3) Morphological features. This was mostly suffixes, prefixes, and infixes (ie, the 不 or 得 in 听—懂). Then there's a few pages on supramorphological processes to read, perchance to dream. 

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  • 1 year later...

This is an old thread I know but its a related question

 

I have been using Yip Po Chings books with two teachers 

 

Interestingly both teachers independently asked after looking at the examples "Is he Cantonese?!" They think his sentences sounded a little non standard Chinese and touch strange. I have also shown these books to other northern Chinese and they think some sentences sound a little weird 

 

No said they were incorrect but I started to wonder...

 

Any thoughts Elizabeth / others?

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, and then the entire Chinese-speaking world complains it sounds odd to them...

 

 

I should clarify then, no complaints from anyone. It was more of a observational comment really. Doesn't bother me at all, just more a point of curiosity. It was interesting to note their initial observations so I started to wonder what makes some sentences appear "Cantonesey". I have no clue

 

It is a grammar book not a "Learn Chinese book" or "spoken Chinese book" which I note often is a source of confusion by reviewers on Amazon

 

 

 

 

PS: I mistyped this bit

 

No-one said they were incorrect but I started to wonder...
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