Re: writing Chinese dialects

Date: Fri Jan 26 2007 - 22:44:34 CST

  • Next message: John H. Jenkins: "Re: writing Chinese dialects"

    The different approaches below definitely have parallels elsewhere,
    though usually there is not access to televison or school text books
    for the similar situations I can think of. With mother tongue in
    literacey very high for some languages, and dialects, I am always
    impressed with any system that works, regardless of my own preferences.


    Quoting "Arne Gotje (ʢ)" <>:

    >> Is the use of ʳ and in Minnan based one any of the above
    >> mechanisms is it like writing "I could a " (I could eat a horse)
    >> where the charcter is used is used solely for it's meaning -- what
    >> one might call an ideographic loan.
    > In Minnan the character has two meanings. 1. it is indeed an
    > ideographic loan from Mandarin and has the same meaning like in
    > Mandarin... this is due to the fact that people are lazy or didn't know
    > that the original character for "eat" is ʳ. Many people indeed think
    > that is the correct character for "eat" when it is actually not. Lack
    > of education I would say... 2. the pronunciation of is kih8 and is
    > the sound when someone is laughing.
    > The dictionary lists both usages but notes that ʳ is the correct
    > character for "eat" and that it should be preferred.
    > This is not the only case, where Mandarin characters got embedded into
    > Minnan, because due to Big5 encoding, there was no room for the
    > original Minnan characters to be encoded (and it was probably
    > politically not wanted). So, most people where not able to use them on
    > their computers and they just used the Mandarin characters which have
    > the same meaning. We can still see this on TV here and then. Nowadays
    > we have a total mess of different publications using different
    > characters for the same words. We can group them into the following
    > categories:
    > 1. Original characters: they use Unicode and publish with the original
    > Minnan characters. These publications are usually written and read by
    > higher educated people.
    > 2. Borrowed characters from Mandarin which have the same meaning and
    > just got branded with a new "sound". This is due to Big5 and the lack
    > of typing the original characters. Unfortunately most people don't know
    > this issue and take these characters as "correct" characters.
    > 3. Phonetical similar Mandarin characters. This is the ugliest of all
    > variants and usually found in schoolbooks. :( Here the authors didn't
    > care about the original characters for Minnan and just use Mandarin
    > characters which sound similar like the Minnan pronunciation they want
    > to display. Here the meaning of the characters makes absolutely no
    > sense, they are purely used as pronunciation aid. Their idea is, that
    > Minnan is primarily a spoken, not a written language and therefor they
    > don't need to care about characters.
    > 4. POJ enthusiasts, who detest the Han characters and claim that the POJ
    > romanization using Latin script is the "true Taiwanese"... (no comment
    > from my side to that claim... it's just not worth discussing).
    > Cheers
    > Arne
    > --
    > Arne G

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