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Learn Chinese in China


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Showing content with the highest reputation on 10/31/2019 in all areas

  1. 2 points
    You seem to make a pretty big assumption as well, though, namely that the people griping about foreigners in this thread are Chinese. That is not the case.
  2. 1 point
    I am not really reading anything right now. Sometimes when I am really bored, I read a bit of 鹿鼎記. Sometimes I read Bill Bryson's "A Short History of Nearly Everything". And usually I read a bit of poetry before going to bed. I have just finished reading "圍城" written by 錢鍾書 and cannot understand why people rave about it ... How about you?
  3. 1 point
    There is a lot of room between 'spending every free minute studying Chinese from day 1 to the detriment of all other activities' and 'not speaking a word of Chinese after ten years in country'. Neither extreme end of that scale is reasonable, in my eyes.
  4. 1 point
    I’ve been reading 绝顶, a 武侠 satire, for a while now, but recently I realized it’s likely going to be a classic in its genre: https://m.dongmanmanhua.cn/BOY/jueding/list?title_no=1331 The humor is on the dry side, but the jokes can be clever (but not so clever that you don’t get them). I quite liked the recent episodes poking fun at internet censorship.
  5. 1 point
    Yes, superficial ones like those - basically, trivial. During my first two years in China, when I arrived speaking no Chinese and had a full-time job*, I made several friendships which remain extremely important to me, but I don't think that would have happened if they'd been conducted in beginner-level Chinese (or beginner-level English, for that matter). And without those friendships, I'd never have been that interested in China or Chinese, nor would I have been motivated to spend much time learning Chinese. Imagine if I'd have told those English-speaking Chinese people who quickly became close friends that I had no time to chatter with them in English because I was too busy trying to attain sufficient Chinese fluency to one day summon a plumber! Speaking Chinese shows you're giving China a lot of face, but I don't think it'll change any Otherness. *16-hours a week teaching spoken English
  6. 1 point
    I would say the barriers are coming down, but not in the way you were hoping for. For example, China is exporting its media censorship to the US now. And the Great Firewall has become more porous, so that young Chinese netizens can engage in Twitter wars with their western counterparts: https://foreignpolicy.com/2019/08/26/china-is-sending-keyboard-warriors-over-the-firewall/
  7. 1 point
    Sure, but they still have a life, no? Even if you don't care about Chinese cuisine, you still need to buy Chinese groceries; even if you don't care about Chinese literature, you still need to read the Chinese bill your landlord slipped under your door. Sure, you can outsource that if you have enough money, but most people don't have that kind of money, or not straight off the plane. And even if speaking some Chinese won't help your career, it will help you find your way around. If you never learn any Chinese, you basically isolate yourself from your surroundings, so that you never really live in China, while also not living in your home country anymore. I'd think you get a stunted life that way.
  8. 1 point
    满拧 - I'd encountered this a few times before, looked it up and learned it can mean "all wrong", as in "he's got that all wrong" but from the context I just found it in, seems it can sometimes be better translated as "the complete opposite", though presumably there's not a hard and fast distinction in the way it's used natively. Also get the impression it's fairly common but only come across it a few times previously to my recall and this instance today.
  9. 1 point
    I know a journalist who lived here for something like ten years, reported on China and could barely say 谢谢. Really. I'll still play nice with such people if they are otherwise okay company, but I won't respect them. And I mean, I get it, you're busy, you have a job and a family and a social life and life China is not easy to navigate so that takes time too. But if you'd learn just one word per day, or even per week!, you'd speak at least some Chinese after a while. On the other hand, I have known several expats who spoke pretty decent Chinese after three or four years, even when that was not a requirement and many of their direct colleagues could barely say 谢谢.
  10. 1 point
    As other people have said, The Chinese teaching industry (government attached) have clearly inflated the 'levels' of the language to avoid scaring people away from it (which is understandable to a point considering their intentions for extending softpower influence, etc etc). the HSK tests are made in such a way that they can be gamed by anyone with enough prep materials and plenty of time for memorizing words and grammar structures. I myself along with other people managed to pass HSK4 (more than 200 points) in around 5-6 months, I have 3 friends who have passed HSK5 in 8-9 months and I even got to meet someone who passed HSK6 in a year (I don't know how though) I think this picture seems more or less reliable depending on how do you see the HSK exams It takes many years of continuous studies to get into a level in which you can comfortably live, study and work in any chinese speaking territory. I'm currently an engineering student and trust me, that convo about the spicy food of 北方 or even the 科技汉语 classes about math operations and highschool concepts can only help you in the valley next to the everest of Chinese learning.
  11. 1 point
    If an expat can give me new insights & perspectives I haven't considered, I welcome them. However, it's important that can speak Chinese or that they are at least trying to learn. Most of the expats I meet have close to zero Chinese ability (despite years in country) and not being able to speak means they're aware of superficial things. They are completely unaware of what they are missing. Of people I've met, the record holders for longest time in China without learning Chinese was an English woman in Shanghai who had been there 15 years(!) and an American who had been there 10 years. The latter proudly (???) noted he spoke "no Chinese!". Likely the exact kind of person Summit is writing about. I've also met Germans, Canadians & other Americans who lived there for years and have no language ability & no desire to improve...... I just can't understand this.... I'm at the other end of the spectrum; even if I'm just visiting a country for a short holiday, I like to learn simple things in the language 1) to be polite, 2) because it's interesting, and 3) locals love foreigners who try to speak their language (#3 is true in any country, except native English speaking ones, since the assumption is everyone should speak English. Another exception to this is France, since they'll likely be unhappy with any incorrect grammar and/or pronunciation)
  12. 1 point
    While the OP obviously needs to ask the university at some point, it's very optimistic to assume the university, or at least front-line staff, will have a clue, especially with reference to scholarships. Researching the question in advance is very wise. The school might / should have regulations. Looking at the rules for Peking University (first I saw on Google) you need to apply to 暂停学业 or 休学 (temporarily stop /rest studies) but 保留学籍 (retain student status / registration), and you can't do it for more than a year. Look for the 第二十二条 in the linked document.
  13. 1 point
    For thousands of years, the vast majority of Chinese people have been illiterate and uneducated. I wouldn't overestimate the importance of Song poetry in pre-Song times.
  14. 1 point
    Mostly I don’t hang out with those people who always have some issue with China. I know the type you’re talking about. Better just to phase them out of your life. I also find it quite quite hard to talk to completely brand new expats. Sometimes I love the enthusiasm and being able to share cool places. Other times the conversation strays to things like spitting or how amazing dumplings are or three wheeled little cars... just can’t talk about that stuff anymore.
  15. 1 point
    Did you ever find the recipe you wanted? I found this one and I think it sounds like the Mongolian potatoes I have ate at chinese restaurants. http://recipes.robbiehaf.com/C/108.htm
  16. 1 point
    墓碑 by 杨继绳. You can see on the first page why it is banned in China.
  17. 1 point
    Today I finished reading the novel 《第七天》 by 余华. I wrote a short review of the book for my Chinese Forums blog, available via this very link.
  18. 1 point
    I'm new here, and last year i saw this series and really enjoyed it. It's nice if u can see it from beginning, it's kind of like soap opera and most of the episodes can be understood separately. It's interesting the author used "古文诗句" to name every episode like a "章回小说" . Furthermore, I really like the names of the characters in it. They're all made up from some "武侠小说", like 白玉汤 is after 白玉堂, 佟湘玉 is after 金湘玉...... They are living in the ancient time but acting or talking like what we do nowaday, and u can hear some different kind of accents which make it more funny. Oh, i'm a girl, so my favorite is 老白, then 吕秀才, then 佟掌柜。 偶地神阿!
  19. 1 point
    Here is a new word I have learnt: hua1ler hua1ler de. No idea how to write it in characters though. Apparently used to describe the sound of water being shaken. I learnt it from this video: listen at 2:36.Does anyone know how it is written?
  20. 1 point
    Diazeugmas exist in English, are found also in Chinese and greatly appeal to me! I find that the most interesting characters are where two or more bits actually mean something, and it makes sense for them to be together in that character. I particularly like 杲 (gao3) which means bright. It even looks like a picture of the sun above the trees. Personally I haven't seen it used much, just in a couple of names. As far as names go, I suppose 曌 (zhao4) can be seen as an improved version of 杲. According to Wikipedia, the history of this character is as follows: "In December 689, ten months before she officially ascended the throne, she [武则天] had the government create the character Zhao (曌), an entirely new invention, created along with 11 other characters in order to show her absolute power, and she chose this new character as her given name, which became her taboo name when she ascended the throne ten months later. The character is made up of 2 pre-existing characters: "Ming" up top meaning "light" or "clearness"; and "kong" on the bottom meaning "sky". The idea behind this is the implication that she is like the light shining from the sky. Even the pronunciation of the new character is exactly the same as "shine" in Chinese."
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