learning Cantonese?!

Discussions on the Cantonese language.

Re: learning Cantonese?!

Post by Tom »

Just want to say that it is fantastic if children growing up in bi-/multi lingual families can learn to speak two or more languages fluently. I also believe that the face<>language connection mentioned by James is very important and should be kept in mind.

Many of my friends have grown up speaking only a foreign language at home (Chinese, Vietnamese, Spanish) and manage to learn English just as good as anyone having English as their mother tounge.

At last but not least, I just want to say that I have also been learning Cantonese for several years and hope to be able to speak it fluently some day (soon). As far as reading Chinese is concerned I still have a loooooong way to go - can read and write about 200 characters or so (less than 1% of the minimum neccessary to be able to read and write).

Good luck!!


Re: learning Cantonese?!

Post by chan »

my dream is to speak cantonese/mandarin fluently and read and write up to 3000 characters just enough to read a daily newspaper or something... i love chinese and its history... i've been watching dubbed chinese dramas in my language ever since i was 8 years old and never missed any good chinese dramas yet and now i am 23... its so easy to learn mandarin coz of the sources and classes offered in college thats why i want to start off learning cantonese first... so by the time i reached 30 years old... i should be able to speak fluent chinese... by the way, i'm far from 3000 characters... i'm at 150 now... 2,850 to go... wish me luck!


Re: learning Cantonese?!




Re: learning Cantonese?!

Post by keith »

I went to HK in the late 70's to live for the purpose of learning Cantonese. I found the HK people very helpful, always encouraging me to learn more. I have never had any negative experiences with them trying to impede me or discourage me. I returned to Toronto,Canada where I met my present Chinese wife. We have 2 wonderful children and we all speak Cantonese as well as English. I just discovered this site and I thing it is great!!


Re: learning Cantonese?!

Post by Dr_aggie »

Well. it's useful to learn Cantonese.
But for thoses who are just curious about Chinese culture and Chinese language, I would say mandarin is much better for beginners.

Mandarin has 4 tones, Catonese has 9. Mandarin vocabulary covers newspapers and books, many Cantonese words have no really writing forms.

I am a native speaker of Mandarin. When I went to Chinatowns in Los Angeles or Houston for eating and shopping, I spoke mandarin all the time. And EVERYONE UNDESTANDS ME WELL. Now very few Cantonese people do not understand Mandarin. Even in Hong Kong, which had been seperated from Beijing government, Mandarin is understood quite widely now.

Moreover, if you choose to learn Cantonese, you'll see how different the writing language (based on Mandarin) and the oral language (local Cantonese) are!


Re: learning Cantonese?!

Post by Catdog »

Yes, I totally agree.
Cantonese is the one of the most difficult languages to learn and I am so lucky that I was born in HK.
And now I am learning other languages as well , such as Putonghua, English and Japanese! I found they are easier to acquire!
Even now, I never stop learning Cantonese from some experts, books,etc and I found it is very interesting, though some are coarse.
Here I share an amusing poem to you all. It is originally composed by a great poet called xu zhi mo, but now it is adapted by a hk songwriter, Lam chun keung!Hope u enjoy it!^^
Original One:《偶然》 adapted one:《啱啱》
我是天空裡的一片雲 我係天上面一舊雲
偶然投進你的波心 個影咁啱遮住你郁郁下既心
你不必驚訝 你唔駛問有無搞錯
更無須歡喜 更加咪開心住
在轉瞬間消滅了踪影 眨下眼我就無晒影囉
你我相逢在黑夜的海上 我地係夜媽媽既海碰頭
你有你的, 我有我的, 方向 你有你既, 我有我既, 蒲點
你記得也好, 你最好忘掉 你記得又好, 最好你咪鬼記住
在這交會時互放的光亮 互相鬥電果陣幾咁光猛
To my surprise, Miss sunset said she learn Cantonese in order to meet a hk boyfriend! I think many hk guys are handsome and easy-going and I bet you will find one very soon!^^