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Thread: Chinese in America: Simplified or Traditional?

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    Default Chinese in America: Simplified or Traditional?


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    im not american chinese but i think both forms should be offered at the same time so that people who prefer one form over the other can get what they want to learn. tbh, i like the simplified form, cause for a guy who hadnt started to take learning chinese seriously until 2.5 years ago like me, memorising the most prequently used 3000 simplified characters is already hard enough, let alone the traditional ones.

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    Senior Member PJ's Avatar
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    Personally, at some point, I'd want to know both. Why limit yourself to one. It's simply helpful to know both.

    But for beginners, I'd think simplified is easier to pick up. It seems to me that the way to go would be to start learning with simplified, then once you have a good grasp, learn traditional. Then, when you know both, you'll have the mastery and the freedom to apply both as fits the circumstance.
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    Moderator Ren Wo Xing's Avatar
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    I've always felt this is a stupid debate, akin to asking, "What type of English should we teach in American schools? Standard American/British English, or medieval English?"

    Unless you really like to read Shakespeare in the original, there's no real point to the latter. The only reason this 'debate' even exists is primarily due (as the article points out) to political reasons, aka Taiwanese Chinese feeling increasingly marginalized in an increasingly Sino-centric world.

    Now, I see nothing wrong with teaching both, if there is sufficient resources for it; that's how we did it at my college, and bravo. But if you have to pick one due to whatever reasons, well then...the bottom line is, language is for the purpose of communication. 98% of Chinese people communicate through Simplified; 2% through traditional. Draw your own conclusions.
    Last edited by Ren Wo Xing; 10-19-09 at 08:16 PM.
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    Senior Member Ren Ying Ying's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by PJ View Post
    Personally, at some point, I'd want to know both. Why limit yourself to one. It's simply helpful to know both.

    But for beginners, I'd think simplified is easier to pick up. It seems to me that the way to go would be to start learning with simplified, then once you have a good grasp, learn traditional. Then, when you know both, you'll have the mastery and the freedom to apply both as fits the circumstance.
    in american schools, it's probably more difficult to teach both due to limited time/resource. but seriously, writing simplified is just more practical. If you want your words to look pretty, go take calligraphy instead (which ironically, can also features "traditional" simplified characters). but still, using simplified doesn't mean people no longer recognize traditional. i am pretty sure those kids in mainland china can read "traditional" better than those kids from "traditional-forms schooled" american kids
    Last edited by Ren Ying Ying; 10-20-09 at 12:23 AM.

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    Moderator Ren Wo Xing's Avatar
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    Well, they can probably read traditional-forms better than 'simplified-form schooled' kids like me read simplified, so yeah...
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    Senior Member Guo Xiang's Avatar
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    I love reading traditional but writing-wise I would pick simplified any time of the day. But that's pure laziness, since written traditional is a lot more harder to memorise (too many strokes) and write (wrist will snap).
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    Senior Member Sillyana's Avatar
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    I think all school use simplified chinese than traditional because in my country, all courses mandarin school use simplified chinese. I like traditional chinese than simplified because its very interesting to learning. Only In my vihara, I can study traditional chinese.

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