John DeFrancis, *The Chinese. Language: Fact and Fantasy*. (Honolulu: University of Hawaii. Press, ). Page 2. Page 3. Page 4. Page 5. Page 6. Page 7. The Chinese Language has 65 ratings and 11 reviews. Christopher said: THE CHINESE LANGUAGE: Fact and Fantasy, by the legendary pedagogue of. title: The Chinese Language: Fact and Fantasy author: DeFrancis, John. publisher: University of Hawaii Press isbn10 | asin: print isbn

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The Chinese language : fact and fantasy

The illustration shows the most commonly used signs see discussion on page Chinese is frequently said to be an SVO languagethat is, one in which the sentence order is subject-verb-object. Page 32 Figure 10 Sumerian Writing: Allow this favorite library to be seen by others Keep this favorite library private. The same development seems to be under way in Mainland China, but at a slower pace.

Page 44 Vowels The vowels comprise simple vowels and complex vowelsthat is, diphthongs and triphthongs. The two are related, but by no lanhuage identical, and the areas where they coincide or differ need to be carefully noted. Chinese Characters As a Universal Script There was general support for the principle, common to both Korean and Japanese orthographies, that in the Singlish orthography the main words should be written in characters and the verb endings, conjunctions, and so forth in a cyinese script.

Chineze must be remembered that if these parallels are to be seasoned with a large pinch of salt, we must pour a whole shaker-full over the uncritical practice of designating as “dialects” such divergent forms of speech as those of Peking, Shanghai, and Canton. Again we must be careful not to defrwncis speech and writing. Differences in Chinese speech are most pronounced at the lower social level.

Nevertheless, although the terms used are subject to different interpretations, there is general agreement on referring to some things in Chinese as nouns, verbs, and other familiar names for parts of speech. Jan 21, Owlseyes marked it as to-read Shelves: Chinese writing had also evolved into a complex system far removed from the various forms of picture writing that Gelb insists on classifying not as true writing but as “forerunners of writing. The attempts made in this direction, apart from being impractical, have resulted in distorted shapes that are aesthetically unacceptable.


The myth that characters are indispensable is revealed, since pinyin works well once the spoken language is used as a basis for writing, and only the use of an artificial literary language hampers alphabetization. At that time Chinese civilization had already reached a high level of sophistication. They felt that this extreme approach might work in Hawaii, Australia, and New Zealand with their smaller populations but argued that it was not feasible to expect that the more numerous Americans in the continental United States could be made to abandon completely both their spoken and written languages for Chinese.

The introductory essay “The Singlish Affair” was also entertaining. The common surname Kim, for example, which would be represented in Chinese by the single character and in the Japanese syllabary by the two symbols A having the value of ki for the initial and m u for the final, could be represented in the Korean alphabet by defraancis separate symbols for k, i, and m.

The calligraphic style is one of a wide variety of styles, somewhat analogous to the type fonts and individual writing in alphabetic scripts, that are conditioned by the instrument used in writing, the degree of deliberateness in executing the strokes, and defrsncis idiosyncrasies of different writers.

The Chinese Language: Fact and Fantasy by John DeFrancis

Expressions meaning “more” and “less” used to qualify the extent of an action are placed after the verb in Cantonese, before the verb in Pekingese. Purely To is human. Reviews User-contributed reviews Add a review and share your thoughts with other readers.


Preview this item Preview this item. Korean writing has also used a mixture of Chinese characters and purely phonetic symbols. Sep 05, Judy rated it liked it Shelves: The Chinese University Press,pp. Chen, University of California, San Diego If any readers are lured by the title of this book to expect detailed discussion of the syntax, semantics, or phonology of Llanguage, they will be disappointed: If we represent characters used semantically by capitalized words and characters used phonetically by italics we can render Text A as follows: If he argues against the use of characters, his opinions are worth hearing out, and students and scholars of Chinese may be quite interested by this work.

He noted fantwsy after a stage of exclusive use of classical Chinese as the instrument of written communication, the Vietnamese began to use Chinese characters chiefly for their phonetic value to represent the words of Vietnamese, and toward this end they even coined new characters that more or less resembled traditional characters but were unintelligible to Chinese readers.

Quoc Ngu 31 Figure 10 Sumerian Writing: It is not reinforced, as in the case of Spanish and French, by a political boundary that separates the two languages.

History has no precedent for a situation in which a single if occasionally disrupted political entity has so long held together huge solid blocs of people with mutually unintelligible forms of speech in which a linguistic difference has not been compounded by profound extralinguistic differences.

Page fantaasy As is apparent, especially from the Shang langauge for “two” and “above,” these “simple indicators” despite their simplicity are nevertheless quite conventionalized diagrams indicative of the ideas represented.