- Website: https://www.sas.upenn.edu/ealc/mair
Posts by Victor Mair:
The following article by Danny Mok appeared in today's South China Morning Post:
The article commenced with this photograph:
Guy Freeman sent in this photograph of a beer advertisement in Hong Kong:
Multilingual sign near the entrance to a toilet at the Cologne Main train station, posted by Simon on douban, via Joel Martinsen:
From David Moser:
— Chris Derps (@ChrisDerps) May 11, 2015
David Rowe took this photo of a sign on a market stall in Sydney Chinatown:
Nathan Hopson found this in a public bathroom at the Nagoya prefectural children's center last Monday:
Joseph Williams sent in the following photograph of a Japanglish sign that he took on a ferry traveling to the famous Itsukushima Shrine (also called Miyajima) in Hiroshima:
From Nancy Friedman (@Fritinancy):
— Nancy Friedman (@Fritinancy) May 4, 2015
Mike Pope relayed to me the following from his son Zack, a high school physics teacher:
I was wondering what the periodic table of elements looked like in China, and found this image.
This may or may not be the "official" periodic table, but I thought it was interesting to see the similarities in the characters. Specifically the character for gold, which is also the character for metal in general, and is a prefix for a large portion of the periodic table. The character for water is a large part of the character for mercury, and a few others, and all of the gas elements have the same character in them. It makes me wonder what the protocol is for naming new elements in Chinese, since they seem to be focused on the properties of the element itself, and that would take more investigating than might be possible for new elements, which usually only exist for fractions of fractions of seconds. Newly discovered elements these days are named (in English) after people: Bohrium, Rutherfordium, Fermium, Einstenium, etc. and I wonder what the Chinese equivalent of those elements is.
The star of this popular Voice of America program is Jessica Beinecke (Bái Jié 白洁). Her Mandarin is quite amazing; indeed, I would say that it is nothing short of phenomenal. Here's a sample:
A week ago on Thursday (4/23/15), the following article appeared in the Washington Post: "The world’s languages, in 7 maps and charts".
These maps in the WP are thought-provoking and informative, but it is unfortunate that, like many other misguided sources, they lump all the Chinese languages (which they incorrectly call "dialects") into one. That's terribly misleading. This would be similar to grouping all the Indo-European languages of Europe as "European" or all the Indo-European languages of India as "Indian".
There has been a considerable amount of discussion concerning the relative merits of bopomofo and Pinyin in Taiwan in recent weeks. A typical article in this vein is "Fèi zhùyīn fúhào jiàoxué, zǎo xué duōzhǒng pīnyīn xìtǒng 廢注音符號教學，早學多種拼音系統" ("Abandon teaching in Mandarin Phonetic Symbols; learn a variety of alphabetical systems from a young age") in Xiǎngxiǎng 想想 ("Thinking-Taiwan") (4/24/15).
In comments to "Suffer the consequences " (4/19/15), Jongseong Park and Bob Ramsey bemoaned what they considered to be the overuse of hyphens in the transliteration of Hangeul. In a later comment, I explained that the hyphens between virtually all syllables in the transliterations were due to the Hangeul converter we've been using, which automatically inserts them. In the future, we'll try to remove most of the hyphens. Read the rest of this entry »
Read the rest of this entry »