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paper代写-Whether to Preserve Chinese Dialects or Not

2019-02-12 | 来源:51due教员组 | 类别:Paper代写范文

下面为大家整理一篇优秀的paper代写范文- Whether to Preserve Chinese Dialects or Not,供大家参考学习,这篇论文讨论了是否该保留方言。对绝大多数人来说,方言的意义非常重大,所以有必要保留方言。为了保护方言,中国应该采取切实可行的措施;否则,中国的语言多样性可能将不复存在。另外,许多传统和文化都是以语言的形式传承下来的,所以保护方言在一定程度上有助于保护历史。

Introduction

It is common sense that different regions are with different dialects and the exclusive dialect in a certain region will pass on from generations to generations. From the historical perspective, dialect is sometimes applied as a language and dialect has become one part of culture and history, contributing to its meaning quite much for the great majority of people. So a fair knowledge can be obtained that it is of great significance for people to preserve the dialects as historical legacy and they will spare no efforts to do it. However, some people argue that it is of necessity to implement the common and standard language for the sake of the unity of people from different regions. There is no doubt that dialects are closely inter-related with history because the history is right the process of humans’ using the dialects.

Whether to Preserve Chinese Dialects or Not

Chinese dialects can be roughly divided into seven categories so that there are Seven Major Chinese Dialects (Ramsey S. Robert. 1987). And the aforementioned seven major Chinese dialects are respectively Mandarin, Wu, Gan, Xiang, Hakka, Yue and Min and they can be further segmented into smaller “sub-dialects”, leading to the total types of Chinese dialects’ reaching several thousands in all. Ramsey (1987) has even provided the estimated population of those seven dialect group based on a total Han Chinese population of 950 million, which can be listed as below: the estimated population of Mandarin is 679,250,000 (71.5%) and the population is distributed in all of North and Southwest; the estimated population of Wu is 80,750,000 (8.5%) and its population is distributed in the coastal area around Shanghai and Zhejiang; the estimated population of Gan is 22,800,000 (2.4%) and it is spoken in Jiangxi; the estimated population of Xiang is 45,600,000 (4.8%) and it is spoken in Hunan; the estimated population of Hakka is 35,130,000 (3.7%) and it is widely scattered from Sichuan to Taiwan; the estimated population of Yue is 47,500,000 (5.0%) and such population is distributed in Guangdong and Guangxi as well as overseas communities; the estimated population of Min is 38,950,000 (4.1%) and this population is distributed in Fujian together with coastal areas of South. From all the information offered by Ramsey, it can be easily found that Chinese dialects are diversified in the first beginning and people that live in different regions tend to speak different dialects.

As time goes by, however, Chinese dialects are posed threat by and their diversity is hard to maintain. One or several kinds of Chinese dialects will disappear for one reason or another. To put it more specifically, Kratochvil Paul has talked about how Chinese language is today, during which he has stated that China has an officially recognized standard language that is taught in the schools and employed by all governmental and official transactions (Kratochvil Paul. 1970). Obviously, it is the government policy as has been especially established to guarantee that the wide public use the only Chinese dialect- Mandarin and they are restricted to use other kinds of Chinese dialects. So a fair knowledge can be obtained that other kinds of Chinese dialects will disappear in the long run.

The same as Paul (1970), a famous religious story- Tower of Babel as well puts forward that it is crucial to uniform the use of Mandarin (Old Testament Stories. 1980). The standard language Mandarin can be understood by people from all over the country so that they can all communicate with each other smoothly. In this way, it is obvious that it can help contribute to higher productivity more or less. In this story, it claims that if people speak the same language, the whole world will be more organized and people can accordingly be more connective to a certain degree. Thus it can be readily predicted that this religious story is in favor of the implementation of the government policy that each and every person should speak the common dialect, Mandarin without exception. The more people are convinced by the story to use only Mandarin, the greater possibility that some other kinds of Chinese dialects will gradually disappear sooner or later.

According to the above, one can easily get that the Chinese dialects will be confronted with the danger of disappearing in the future if it continues to happen in that way. Luckily, what is good news to say is that many efforts have been made in order to preserve Chinese dialects and those efforts do take some effects. Detailed speaking, the news video posted by Al Jazeera has depicted a phenomenon that hundreds of people carried out a protest in Hong Kong against the change of the language of local TV program from Cantonese dialect to Mandarin in Guangzhou- the capital of Guangdong Province (Al Jazeera. 2010). Those protests aim to keep the local dialects as a part of their culture and history and people would like to ensure the integrity of their history via guaranteeing that the dialect still exists. It turns out that those kinds of protests are successful and they make it to keep their local dialects in their culture and history. And the rationale why Al Jazeera, one member of the news organization objects, would choose to object the change of the TV program language lies in that the value of dialect has been recognized and dialect has already been endowed with an extraordinary role in the heart of the large number of people. It can be understood in this way that dialects are not simply dialects; dialects have already become a kind of symbol of people’s sense of belonging and sense of honor toward their own culture. Dialects can not be violated and people’s dialects should be respected under whatever situation. Taking the great significance of sense of belonging and sense of honor toward their own culture and history into consideration, it is apparent that the great majority of people will really spare no efforts to protect the dialects from disappearing in any way.

Moreover, Weibing Ding has also agreed that dialects should be protected from disappearing in order for the integrity of culture. In the article of Weibing, he focuses on the Chaoshan dialect and he gives a lot of evidences to prove that the existence of chaoshan dialect mostly lies in the usage of alliteration when back in the Dongjin Dynasty (265-420 ce) (Weibing Ding. 2011). Alliteration means a phrase consisting of two or more characters with the same initial consonant. And we can illustrate two or more words in one in the old Chinese language. In Chaoshan dialect we also speak that way. Thus it can be easily imagined that Chaoshan dialect has its own distinct characteristics, which determines that it can not be replaced by other dialects (Shelley Tulloch. 2006). Maybe alliteration is not specific to only one particular language, but the disappearance of the Chaoshan dialect will undoubtedly cause damage to Chinese language more or less.

My father is a Chaoshanese so that I am more familiar with this dialect. I used to live in Shenzhen so that I could not understand the Chaoshan dialect in the first beginning when I came back to Chaoshan. I had to admit that I felt distanced from there due to my being unable to understand the dialect. But this feeling disappeared quite soon after my searching for a lot of videos about the Chaoshan dialect and listened to it from surrounding people. At the same time, I have learned that Chaoshan dialect has retained a lot of classical Chinese components later on and it is rather attractive to me that the Chaoshanese can use the old Chinese language so well. Personally speaking, I am in favor of the opinion of the necessity to preserve the Chinese dialects and it is important to prevent them from disappearing. I am sure that such thoughts are also many of others that speak the same dialect as me, and even those that speak their own dialects different from me. It seems that the preservation of dialects is the common dream of people speaking different dialects for a long time.

James (2015) has researched about why people will fight so hard to preserve endangered languages, which can just well specify why people would try their best to preserve our dialects. What James focuses on is the dying of the Pitkern language due to the popularity of English and many people prefer English under most situations. In the mind of James Harberk, the loss of a language is just the loss of a species and the disappearance of a certain language is just one kind of extinction. The more concrete information that he has declared is that the disappearance of a language means the loss of the following four things in the meantime: cultural diversity, cultural identity, intellectual diversity and linguistic diversity (James Harberk. 2015). Obviously, it is of great necessity for people to try their best to preserve endangered languages no matter how painstaking it might be.

In addition, Matt Schiavenza, the senior content manager at the Asia Society and a former contributing writer for The Atlantic, has composed an article about saving China’s dying languages, during which the idea of preserving a language means preserving history has been emphasized (Matt Schiavenza. 2013). At the first of his essay, Matt (2013) has proposed that China is a country that is remarkably rich in linguistic diversity, which can also suggest that there are various different kinds of dialects in China. But he continues to say that China’s linguistic diversity is threatened by its rapid development in that the government mandates to use Mandarin in schools and official settings (Matt Schiavenza. 2013). In the point of view of Matt, the primary reason why the dialects are dying is that a larger and larger number of people have the consciousness to use Mandarin as required by the government. Therefore it is obvious that many different kinds of Chinese dialects will be confronted with the risk of disappearing if no measures are taken to preserve those dialects. Concerning such phenomenon, Matt accordingly comes up with the idea that efforts to preserve some of those old tongues should be made in that preserving a language means preserving history. What history means to the wide public is known to each and every one of us and all of us hold that human beings can draw lessons from the past history so that they won’t make the same mistake again. And it is recommended that people should relate to the past history from time to time so that they can reflect on themselves frequently so as not to feel regretful when committing the same mistake over and over again in the future.

Conclusion

Looking back upon the Chinese history, a reasonable conclusion can be drawn that feasible measures should be taken for the sake of preserving Chinese dialects; otherwise the linguistic diversity of China may not maintain any more. Chinese dialects should be protected in that many traditions and cultures are passed down in the form of language and preserving dialects can help preserve history to a certain degree. Only in this way can those preserved dialects keep bringing benefits toward people generations and generations to come and can they understand our country’s history better.

Bibliography

Al Jazeera. Defending Cantonese dialects and identity in Hong Kong. Youtube. August 02, 2010. <http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QNsNyxyN7yg>.

Kratochvil Paul. The Chinese Language Today. Hutchinson & Co LTD. 1970. Print.

James Harbeck. Why do we fight so hard to preserve endangered languages? March 2, 2015. < http://theweek.com/articles/541609/why-fight-hard-preserve-endangeredlanguages >.

Matt Schiavenza. On Saving China’s Dying Languages. June 18, 2013.  <https://www.theatlantic.com/china/archive/2013/06/on-saving-chinas-dying-languages/276971/ >.

Old Testament Stories. Chapter 7: The Tower of Babel. 1980. Pp 30-32.

Ramsey S. Robert. The Language of China. Princeton: Princeton University. 1987. Print.

Shelley Tulloch. Preserving Dialects of an Endangered Language. Current Issues in Language Planning. 7(2/3). 2006. Pp 269-286.

Weibing, Ding. History of Chaoshanese. Chaoshan Businessman. Dec. 2011.             <http://cs.dahuawang.com/view.asp?newsno=947>.

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