Wednesday, March 12, 2014

論 語 (Confucius --- the Analects), a new Translation

Confucianism was and still is the backbone of Chinese culture. The (Confucius --- the Analects) is the nutshell of the Confucianism. Yet, 100% of middle school Chinese language teachers both in China and in Taiwan does not read in its entirety, and they cannot understand 50% of the book as they no longer understand the Chinese language at that level.

Before 1920s, 85% of population in China were illiterate, but those 15% were able to understand the entire ‘scope’ of Chinese language. Today, Chinese government claimed that 85% of population in China are now literate (able to read and write on the street talk level, no more classic canons). Yet, 99.99% of this literate population cannot understand by reading even with the help of dictionary. That is, with the 1920s standard, the illiterate rate on Chinese language is now 99.999%. is only about 1/20 the length of Bible. While many Westerners did read Bible in its entirety and have no problem of understand its language, it is truly a shame that 99.99% of Chinese population cannot understand the language of , let alone to appreciate its essence and its spirits. This shameful situation was brought by the May 4th movement, led by 適、 秀、 迅、 in 1919.  

brought up the slogan ‘ [“Smash the Confucius’ flea market (swap meet) "]’; then it became a new cultural movement (see, ). In addition to outcaste the Confucianism as the malignant tumor in Chinese culture, it killed the Chinese language proper, and everything which remains is the ‘street talk’ language. 

Thus, I have two missions for translating the .
a.  Allowing the Westerners to read and to understand the nutshell of Confucianism.
b.  Allowing the Chinese to read and to understand , as there is not much chance for them to understand it with their Chinese language. The English translation will help them to jump over that great canyon. At the same time, it will provide them a chance to learn that great language.

Wednesday, January 15, 2014

The accurate Chinese grammar

Chinese grammar is a very big subject.

 Before the May 4th movement, the Chinese language had reached the zenith height in the writings, without ever discussing the English-type grammar. That is, there is a Chinese grammar of its own. Yet, after the May 4th movement, the Chinese grammar was squeezed into the English-like grammar structure, and no one knows the true Chinese grammar anymore today.

Yet, discussing Chinese grammar in theory is not easily understood by even the native Chinese now. Thus, I have used  ‘西廂記’ as the source of examples to describe the Chinese sentence ‘structure’, for two reasons.

First, it almost encompasses all types of Chinese sentences (它卻幾乎包含了漢文的全部文體)。
              對白 --- 白話體
               --- 律體
               文言 --- 散體
               --- 詞是從詩律中, 解放出來的。不受字數限制。但仍講究音韻。

Second, it is a very short novel which has only about 50,000 words (‘西廂是一本很有趣的愛情故事。篇幅也很短, 約僅五萬字) which is only about 1/20 of the length of ‘紅樓夢 That is, students can easily read it over and over.
Yet, this new book “‘西廂記’:  漢語文法大全  (Chinese Grammar)” teaches ‘Chinese grammar’ to those who must already be able to read the current Chinese newspaper, as this great classic novel ‘西廂記’ is used as the example material for analyzing the Chinese sentences. I have made the entire boob of  ‘西廂記’ available in this book. I also made some glossary explanations (註解) which help the reader to read the novel easier.

The earlier version of the book is available at . Now, the pdf file of this book is available for the readers of this blog (free of charge, valued at $80), as a token of appreciation for everyone’s devotion of learning or teaching Chinese language, and it can be downloaded at . The pdf file has larger and better looking font than the web page can provide and has the latest version.