Archive for May, 2020
Chinese Language and Hierarchy

Chinese Language and Hierarchy

Chinese society is hierarchical, which focuses on “respect” for the person who is perceived to be holding high status within the Chinese social structure. The concept of hierarchy is heavily influenced by Confucianism, which emphasises loyalty between family members and towards people who are of high status.

To communicate effectively with a Chinese person, understand their...

The Importance of the Mandarin Chinese Language

The Importance of the Mandarin Chinese Language

Mandarin Chinese is the official language of the Peoples Republic of China (PRC). Mandarin is also widely spoken across Asia; in fact, it is the most widely spoken language in the world. More than one billion of the world’s people are Chinese speakers.

There is sometimes confusion about the difference between Mandarin and Chinese. Mostly when...

The History of Pinyin

The History of Pinyin

The first Westerners to develop a system to pronounce Chinese characters using the Roman alphabet were Thomas Wade and Herbert A. Giles. They published a Chinese-English Dictionary in 1892. In the 1950’s the Wade-Giles system was entirely replaced in mainland China by the Pinyin system.

Just like the Wade-Giles System, the Pinyin System is a phonetic...

Pronouncing Mandarin Chinese using the English Alphabet

Pronouncing Mandarin Chinese using the English Alphabet

The Pinyin System is a phonetic system used to pronounce Chinese characters using the English Alphabet. For example, 上海 are the Chinese characters for the name of the city Shanghai. Shanghai is the Pinyin for those characters. Pinyin was developed in the mid 1950’s and translates literally to “spell sound”. The purpose of Pinyin is...