2006-09-23

Communist Assimilation and Sex

I started blogging because of wangjianshuo. According to the author, this blog, about Shanghai and whatever else he feels like writing about, generates 2 million visitors a month!

He mentioned a couple of times that his blog is monitored (as are all blogs in China). What gets sensored? We don't know. But he mostly sticks to local issues.

The following post is the closest thing I found to what could be considered criticism of the central government. It is about something I am fascinated with: language. Read on.

From: Wangjianshuo's blog (Events in Shanghai that affect my life and others)

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Is English Skill That Important

(...)

Do we need mandarin, or Pu Tong Hua?

Let's take a look of the mandarin in China. Lots of my friends and I grew up in Luoyang and can only speak mandarin. We has lost the ability to speak the Hennan dialect, which has existed and been inherited for more than 1000 years. Mandarin is a great threat to the local language. It is good on the other hand, that no matter where I travel in China, there is no language difficulties - it is the official and most popular language.

Surprisingly, I visited Tibetan area last month. The guide there can also speak fluent mandarin. This helped me a lot. However, I cannot communicate with the groom. This was quite bad. Many reports complain that the government is stealing the Tibet from the Tibet people by stealing their language. It can be true in some terms. It is not a matter of the government is stealing or not, it is just a matter of fact.

Not only my home or Tibet, every city, every town and every village is facing the same problem. Maybe only Beijing and some Northeast province can survive. So my question is, should I insist to speak the local dialect?

However, I also have friends who cannot speak mandarin. When they visit me in Shanghai, he cannot be understood by people there. This has brought him a lot of trouble. It is difficult for him to find a job or to find new friends - the reason is simple, nobody will learn his language just to understand him.

Key learning

From my experience and my friend's, I learnt that a language is mainly for communication proposes. Sometimes there are major languages that are widely accepted, and the broad acceptance make it easier for people to communicate, it is beneficial to learn it.

How about English

When English is concerned, it is hard. Since the government enforces the adoption of Mandarin and it is within the same country, people won't push back that much. However, if this adoption span across the border of countries, it will hurt the feeling of the people. It is reported that the people and government of France is working every hard to push back the aggression of English to their language.

(...)

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So basically, the Communist central government is actively killing off languages and culture that belong to more people than the population of France. According to wangjianshuo , only the language of Beijing and some Northeast province can survive.

250,000 people in word speak Icelandic (a language said to be similar to Old Norse). There are 1.3 billion people in China. That is 5200 times the population of Iceland. I have no plans on learning Icelandic, much less 5200 Chinese languages. If I go to the trouble of learning Mandarin, I want every Chinese looking person I meet to be able to speak it.

On the other hand, maybe Simple English should be the second language of the Chinese. That way, people could keep their language and culture without being assimilated by the Mandarin speaking population (and central government).

On a side note, did you know that French was only spoken by a minority in New France? The Filles du roi changed that, however. As most of them were institutionolised by the government in Paris, they spoke French. And since they were the only girls in town available for marriage, the Breton, Bask, Provencal and etcetera speakers were happy to oblige.

The ultimate assimilation tool: sex.

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