One thing I love about the community here is it's international flavour. Being a Chinese language learning site that, at least at the lower levels, uses English to teach Chinese, I guess it's only natural that many poddies come from a native English speaking background. So we have Americans, Canadians, UK, and Irish, Aussies, and Kiwis. Then we have those impressive multilinguals such as the Europeans...Germans, French, Dutch, Swedish; and Japanese; and at least one Mexican. But this post is not aimed at any of those Nationalities [but of course still welcome to contribute]. What I'd particularly be interested in is what other nationalities are represented amongst the poddie community? Perhaps many others are lurkers, perhaps not so confident of English. I think there were many profiles under "Afghanistan" but that seemed to be a default. So if you are a poddie that belongs to a Nationality not mentioned above, why not come onto this post and let us know...maybe even add a bit about why you're studying Chinese, what your native language is, and any insights you may have coming at Chinese from your angle.
bababardwanFebruary 03, 2011, 01:31 PM
ps I think I have seen some other nationalities occasionally...vietnamese, Indian, ?south african, ?brazilian, and a few others, but I usually don't check so let's hear from these and others.
And while we are in the UK we are English, Scotish, Welsh, Irish, Cornish and probably other stuff too :-)
At least two of these have their own active languages (I'm not sure about Cornish on even if it's really separate, though I love it's ice cream!) For such a small lump of rock we're quite full of distinct cultures.
I mention it only because the Uk tends to get cast by the plumby Kings English bad guys in hollywood movies but there are such a variety of lovely local accents and slants on English. It seems to me although wide spread there are lots of different takes on plain old English too. In fact Glaswegian is almost to English what shanghainese is to mandarin :-)
Thought it might be fun to add accents to your search as well as Nationalities.
Anyway toodle pip old chap, :-)
yeah, I love all the various accents and traditions in the UK...well aware of them mate, though of course I'm no expert. Apart from immigrants, these folk generally speak English , right, so shouldn't have that extra hurdle of learning Chinese through another foreign language. I knew that UK [with all that entails as you point out] was well represented here and I was just wondering what other nationalities/cultures/native language backgrounds were represented on CPod. A shame they're all 太害羞，呵呵。 But yeah, good suggestion mate, I'd be interested in adding accents to the search...I'm very interested in accents. Where's Brick? ..he'd surely have something to say on that subject too.
Yep, I'm Welsh and all of my education was in Welsh which is a completely different language to English. And different to Chinese too!
Anyways, my native languages are Welsh and English, and I'm learning Chinese a) my fiancee is Chinese
b) I need something else on my CV
c) I have a wedding next year in which I want to be able to help our families understand each other
d) I work in a Chinese environment and want to understand the banter and be able to understand and help the kids I teach!
绝对，I do actually have a little book on Welsh language I bought while there many years ago, but this online stuff is just so 方便 and I don't think I would have come up with anything correct with that either, hehe. :)
I have a friend who is Welsh and fluent. I really think this is great about Wales, I have friends that moan about it but I love that fact that the language is thriving. Mind you I love visiting Wales too :-) Maybe one day I will give it a go just so I can say my please and thank you's when I visit.
bababardwan: I know what you mean about it being too 方便！I just should cut down on using it for Chinese... It was almost right, although I assume you meant cool-they translated cool too literally and it came up with "oer" which means cold! Cŵl is correct and just a transliteration from English.
Trevorb: what do the friends complain about? If you try speaking Welsh, people will appreciate it a lot- especially in West and North Wales!
hehe, yeah, I was trying to say cool, as in 酷, not cold as in 冷。。。but hey, you knew where I was coming from and perhaps got a slight chuckle out of the error which is the beauty of giving another language a shot, if only to amuse the natives, and become pals at the same time, hehe :)
bodaweiFebruary 08, 2011, 10:45 PM
Given my experience learning Chinese in China I wouuld expect the market for learners here to include (in particular) Korean (and to a lesser extent other adjacent Asian nationalities like Japanese, that you mentioned, Thai, Burmese and Vietnamese), African (various countries), Mexican and Scandanavians. I'd be surprised if these nationalities are not represented on ChinesePod. Except that.. some of these are not strong in English (big generalization I know).
One of the surprises in China is that little old Australia, with it's remarkably high percentage of population being Chinese, provides just a small minority of foreign learners of Chinese in China. At Zheda Australians were maybe 2% of total foreign language students, and this is a university that a couple of Australian universities have a formal relationship with.
your predictions are interesting. I'd love it if they spoke up and we had some confirmation. Particularly I would find how many Africans are learning Chinese and from which countries/cultures interesting, as I have least awareness here. It would make sense that some showed an interest as I've heard that China is making investments there.
"One of the surprises in China is that little old Australia, with it's remarkably high percentage of population being Chinese, provides just a small minority of foreign learners of Chinese in China"
...I'm wondering a little bit about this surprise. Firstly because our population is so small comparatively [I'd be interested in hearing what percentages are involved for countries of a similar size or smaller countries like NZ or Ireland...I wouldn't be surprised if the latter punches above it's weight]. I guess we have a lot of economic ties with China, so from that 观点 I can understand the surprise. I'm wondering what you are saying with the "remarkably high percentage of population being Chinese" bit...wouldn't a sizeable proportion be native speakers? ..fanzheng ...I wonder what proportion would go back to China to study Chinese. ..or are you saying with such a high proportion of Chinese here that such interaction should stimulate interest?
' I would find how many Africans are learning Chinese and from which countries/cultures interesting, '
I don't know the answer, but at Zheda in 2006/07 Africans out-numbered Australians. :) I can't name countries with any confidence - there were several represented.
bodaweiFebruary 12, 2011, 05:59 AM
'the "remarkably high percentage of population being Chinese" bit'
This statement was a bit loose - it was a reference to the discussion a while back on the % of total population with Chinese heritage. According to Wikipaedia, after China itself (and Taiwan) we have the following ranking: Singapore, Malaysia, Thailand, Indonesia and Australia (Indonesia and Australia being remarkably close but of course Indonesia has a much larger number in absolute terms.)
Now a proportion are native speakers, agreed, but a lot of second and later generation Chinese don't automatically learn Chinese - which is why when you learn Chinese in a classroom in Australia the single largest group of people have Chinese heritage. ABCs.
Your suggestion that a large Chinese population could generate a lot of interest is also true.
But my 'surprise' also comes from the bias one lives with based on 'what is in your head' - availability is the technical term I think. Because we are Australian and we have a lot of Chinese residents, and we do a lot of business with China, I guess I expected to see a lot of Australians in China learning Chinese. When in China you see things from another perspective.
bweedinMarch 09, 2011, 06:08 AM
I'm from Panama, so of course Spanish is my first language, but I have an American accent when I speak English due to my American father!
I think I might be the only Panamanian on here.