“If you talk to a man in a language he understands, that goes to his head. If you talk to him in his language it goes to his heart.” – Nelson Mandela
Hi All! It’s been long that we had a discussion on some hot topic related to Language. Let me start with some stats here. It is reported that over 3,000 universities and colleges in 109 countries provide students with Chinese courses. Take a look at the number of places in the world does people use Chinese.
The fallacy of people saying that European Languages are always easier is something that we need to get over with. Mastering Chinese is not what I am trying to promote here. But getting you basics right and socializing a bit by intermediate Chinese; is something we all can achieve. And the moment I would say …you will definitely ask me the reason ‘Why?’. So without much ado let’s get to our pointers.
First, the popularity of Mandarin is directly proportional to the great achievements that China has made in the last 30 years. Thirty years ago China was a poor and undeveloped country, but it has come out of his own dungeons since then! China has become the second biggest economy in the world. With the Beijing 2008 Olympics and the World Expo 2010 in Shanghai, the world has learned more about China and China has learned more about the world. China has played important roles in some international affairs.
Second, when the 2007 global Great recession broke out the Chinese government’s stimulus plan helped the world economy to bounce back.
Third, some entrepreneurs and businessmen would like to trade with China and they require their employees or children to learn Chinese. It’s expensive to hire a translator to figure out what had been communicated. Also that personal touch is missing. There is huge potential of business in China, so why not learn the language?
Last but not least, governments and social organizations are taking great measures to encourage people to learn the language. For example, in the Universiade village in Longgang District Shenzhen, a Chinese Language Learning Center was set up. About 80 foreign athletes came to the center to learn basic Chinese. Wherever you went, you heard “nihao”, (hello), “xieexie” (thank you) and “zaijian” (goodbye). Some athletes learned how to write their names in Chinese characters. They said Chinese traditional culture was very interesting.
Now the question that arises here is- How hard is it to learn Mandarin? Well, language is not a tonic that I can prescribe in daily doses. It comes with practice and effort. You need to unlearn and re-learn so many things to even start from the basic. You are justified in making comparisons with other languages but it’s equally important to stop looking through the magnifying glass. It will take you nowhere.
Wearing Mandarin Collar is a trend; so is the case with learning the Mandarin language. This is the time to move ahead!