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waning Cantonese?

2006-01-09 16:52:08.815993+00 by Dan Lyke 3 comments

Interesting: LA Times article claiming that Cantonese is losing out to Mandarin in business dealings. Although Mandarin is the official language in China, I've predicted that Cantonese will be on the rise because that's the language used in the regions which are actually building the factories and products.

[ related topics: Language Current Events Hong Kong ]

comments in ascending chronological order (reverse):

#Comment Re: made: 2006-01-09 17:45:39.971916+00 by: other_todd

This is one of several reasons that when I had to pick which one to study, I picked putonghua. This is and was initially a detriment, since so much Chinese in America is still Cantonese, but I believe that putonghua is going to win ... and eventually be a lot more useful should I ever actually get a chance to go to China. I hope Cantonese doesn't vanish entirely, but there was not much hope once the PRC began pushing putonghua standardization, decades ago, that Cantonese would triumph as a commerce tongue.

#Comment Re: made: 2006-01-09 17:49:50.476941+00 by: other_todd

Also, don't forget: As far as I can tell, the PRC doesn't give too much of a damn about Canton or Hong Kong. Hong Kong is important to them as a port and a showpiece and that looks to be about it. Their major pushes are electrification and education of western and rural china, and continued business development along the axis from Shanghai to Beijing. Yes, they're building all the factories in the south, but they're building all the technology firms and white-collar industries in the north.

#Comment Re: made: 2006-01-09 18:08:24.526703+00 by: Dan Lyke

Yeah, my belief in Cantonese comes from the fact that Guangdong has been the financial success, and not just a "wow, that looks like a bubble", but a real success, despite (or perhaps because of) its distance from Beijing.