Which language is best to learn?

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jstanfield
Posts: 2
Joined: Fri Jan 12, 2007 12:32 am

Which language is best to learn?

Post by jstanfield » Fri Jan 12, 2007 12:40 am

I would like to learn the 'Chinese' language, but I'm just starting to research it and it's evident there are a few Chinese languages. I work in manufacturing and distribution, and my company does a lot of work in China. Learning the language would be a great skill for me to have.

So my questions are:

1. Which is the most appropriate language to learn for business?

2. Are the different languages structured in a way that requires that one be learned first, then the others?

3. Are they different languanges entirely, or are they merely different dialects (such as the differences between the English spoken in England, the US, Ireland, Australia, and Scotland)?

I'd appreciate any help; even just a link to a site that would explaing this for me would be good.

Thanks, Jason
tfc.chin
Posts: 50
Joined: Wed Mar 09, 2005 12:07 pm

Re: Which language is best to learn?

Post by tfc.chin » Fri Jan 12, 2007 8:42 am

jstanfield wrote:I would like to learn the 'Chinese' language, but I'm just starting to research it and it's evident there are a few Chinese languages. I work in manufacturing and distribution, and my company does a lot of work in China. Learning the language would be a great skill for me to have.

So my questions are:

1. Which is the most appropriate language to learn for business?

2. Are the different languages structured in a way that requires that one be learned first, then the others?

3. Are they different languanges entirely, or are they merely different dialects (such as the differences between the English spoken in England, the US, Ireland, Australia, and Scotland)?
1. For business you should learn standard Chinese, which is Mandarin.

2. No.

3. They are different languages in as far as you consider French and Italian as different languages.

Good luck,

Thomas
jstanfield
Posts: 2
Joined: Fri Jan 12, 2007 12:32 am

Post by jstanfield » Fri Jan 12, 2007 10:34 pm

Thank you, Thomas ... I'm just getting started here, so this helps a lot.

I'd hate to get a year into it then find out I'm learning the wrong language ...

Thanks again! :)
Match
Posts: 10
Joined: Sun Feb 25, 2007 9:07 am

Re: Which language is best to learn?

Post by Match » Sun Feb 25, 2007 11:55 am

>>1. Which is the most appropriate language to learn for business?

For doing business in China, I would recommend you to learn Mandarin (as mention - the standard). Then again, doing businesses in Hong Kong, Macau, or other southern cities... learning Cantonese might help as well!

>>2. Are the different languages structured in a way that requires that one be learned first, then the others?

All the different dialects are written in the same way. There are no different structures for writing them nor reading them. The only different is the pronunciation of them in each dialects/languages. Learning Mandarin might help you a bit on mastering the other 3 dialects. (Own Opinion)

>>3. Are they different languanges entirely, or are they merely different dialects (such as the differences between the English spoken in England, the US, Ireland, Australia, and Scotland)?

I think they were labeled as "dialects"? But there are differences in them, therefore you just can't really compare it to a language like English. I would like to put it as different "language" instead. One speaking in Cantonese might not understand anything from the Wu dialect or Hokkien. They all might understand Mandarin, but that's because it was required and was taught in schools. :wink:
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