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ERIC Number: EJ874054
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2008-Sep
Pages: 17
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: N/A
ISBN: N/A
ISSN: ISSN-0388-0001
Inventing a Modern Lexicon for Grammar in Chinese: The Experience of Wang Fengzao, Ma Jianzhong and Yan Fu
Pellin, Tommaso
Language Sciences, v30 n5 p529-545 Sep 2008
In China, from the second half of the nineteenth century to the first years of the twentieth century, extensive translation of Western works on science, economics and law was undertaken. The goal was to spread "Western learning", thought of as the key tool for the industrial and military modernization of the country, among the Chinese ruling class. There was a strong sense of urgency, as the ultimate aim was to defend the Empire against the threat posed by the Western powers to traditional Chinese social and political structures. The translators necessarily had to create brand new scientific terminologies to express Western concepts. Among the texts translated in that period were also some works that introduced Western grammatical study into China. This paper presents the results of an inquiry into the lexical creations in the domain of grammar, as evidenced by three of the first Chinese texts dealing with this topic by Wang Fengzao, Ma Jianzhong and Yan Fu. The goal of this investigation is to find out, through an inquiry into the social and cultural context of the three essays, whether the socio-cultural differences between the environments these essays were embedded in had any influence on the invention of modern Chinese grammatical terminology. If some influence can be identified, then it must be evaluated through the assessment of the typologies of words involved in this process of lexification. (Contains 1 figure and 1 table.)
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: China