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Sound and Script in Chinese Diaspora

  • Hardcover
What happens when language wars are not about hurling insults or quibbling over meanings, but are waged in the physical sounds and shapes of language itself? This title explores the global language trade, arguing that it aims at more sophisticated ways of exerting influence besides simply wielding knuckles of power.
Sound and Script in Chinese Diaspora
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What happens when language wars are not about hurling insults or quibbling over meanings, but are waged in the physical sounds and shapes of language itself? Native and foreign speakers, mother tongues and national languages, have jostled for distinction throughout the modern period. The fight for global dominance between the English and Chinese languages opens into historical battles over the control of the medium through standardization, technology, bilingualism, pronunciation, and literature in the Sinophone world. Encounters between global languages, as well as the internal tensions between Mandarin and other Chinese dialects, present a dynamic, interconnected picture of languages on the move. In "Sound and Script in Chinese Diaspora," Jing Tsu explores the new global language trade, arguing that it aims at more sophisticated ways of exerting influence besides simply wielding knuckles of power.
Through an analysis of the different relationships between language standardization, technologies of writing, and modern Chinese literature around the world from the nineteenth century to the present, this study transforms how we understand the power of language in migration and how that is changing the terms of cultural dominance. Drawing from an unusual array of archival sources, this study cuts across the usual China-West divide and puts its finger on the pulse of a pending supranational world under 'literary governance.'
Jing Tsu is Associate Professor of Chinese Literature at Yale University
"Sound and Script in Chinese Diaspora" unveils a broad and many-splendored landscape of the modern Chinese language in theory and practice in all its dynamic manifestations. it both delineates and deconstructs the myth of a monolingual national language called Chinese. There is no sounder and more all-rounded study of the cultural richness and diversity of Chinese diaspora, which has reached, as this book has shown, nearly global proportions.--Leo Ou-fan Lee, author of otherhuptitle>Shanghai Modern" and "City Between Worlds""
Author
Jing Tsu
Short Title
SOUND & SCRIPT IN CHINESE DIAS
Publisher
Harvard University Press
Language
English
ISBN-10
0674055403
ISBN-13
9780674055407
Media
Book
Format
Hardcover
Imprint
Harvard University Press
Place of Publication
Cambridge, Mass
Country of Publication
United States
Illustrations
14 halftones
DEWEY
895.109
Pages
306
Year
2010
Publication Date
2010-12-21
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