Cantonese are not "authentic" Chinese

Discussions on the Cantonese language.

Re: Cantonese are not "authentic" Chinese

Postby Thomas Chan » Thu Jul 18, 2002 1:34 pm

yue wrote:
>
> Iv'e never said that cantonese are not chinese, i only said
> that cantonese are not authentic chinese.

If something is "not authentic", then it's not. If someone gave you
some "gold" that was "not authentic" (e.g., it is pyrite), then they
cannot honestly say it was gold. It's either real or its fake.


> The word china
> came after the qin state conquered other 6 states and
> established a unified country. From my opinion i think
> authentic chinese should be define as the people of all 7
> states that were living in the year 221 b.c when the state of
> China was created and the word chinese come about!

Okay, this is good that you are providing us with what your
definition of "authentic Chinese" means before making statements
such as in the name of this thread. It saves a lot of discussion if
everyone isn't talking about different things.

However, now you must tell us how you are defining "Cantonese".
If someone lived in Luoyang in 222 B.C., and 20 years later, we
find him living in Lingnan, would you define this person as
"Cantonese"? If so, then "Cantonese" would still be "authentic
Chinese".


> If you say cantonese are chinese because they speak a
> chinese language; can you define what languages to be
> considered as chinese.

Chinese languages belong to the Chinese (or "Sinitic", if you
prefer) branch of the Sino-Tibetan language family. I don't think
I need to tell you which languages are Chinese. (And no, Vietnamese
doesn't belong to Sino-Tibetan.


> I also disagree with ppk that no one
> speaks mandarin before 1400 because there are around 850
> millions people speak mandarin today. This number is too
> huge!

850 million or whatever is out of about a bit over a billion people.
However, this is a modern population figure, and if you look back
only a few decades, the Chinese population can be counted in
hundreds of millions.


> If mandarin was a language of such a small state in
> the classical time, how come mandarin becomes the most widely
> spoken language by the majority of today's population. I
> don't believe mandarin just pop out from somewhere and
> becomes the most dominant language. From my opinion, i think
> mandarin must have been a widely spoken language of many
> states in the classical time; anything other than that, i
> can't think of a reason why this language is so popular today.

Look at the geography of China. Mandarin is spoken across territory
which is rather flat and accessible, and Mandarin dialects are very
homogenous. Now, look at the other Chinese languages--they are
all squished into the southeast, along the coast. For the other
extreme, look at Min, spoken in Fujian. Its dialects exhibit the most
diversity, and the region is very mountainous--in fact, that was the
last region added to China in antiquity (I'm not counting places like
Yunnan, which are recent in comparison to long-term history) in
Tang times, I recall.


> ...by the way, i brought in the vietnamese topic was because
> many chinese texts and critics always deny that vietnamese
> didn't live in modern day Kwangtung and Kwangsi provinces. I
> might sound like a Jew who wants to reclaim the "promised
> land" but the fact is that vietnamese did live in these
> provinces in the classical era!

I was aware of that fact already, but thanks. I don't know what
these Chinese texts or who these critics are, but it's well known that
there were non-Chinese peoples living in the south--collectively, they
were called the Bai Yue 百越 (Hundred Yue)--the Chinese didn't really
know the differences (and probably didn't really care to know).

BTW, are you familiar with the word Yue 粵? This is the name the
Cantonese have adopted for themselves. But it is really the same
word as Yue 越. In the past, they are used somewhat interchangably.
(Of course, 越 does not always mean Vietnamese.)



Thomas Chan
tc31@cornell.edu
Thomas Chan
 

Re: Cantonese are not "authentic" Chinese

Postby yue » Fri Jul 19, 2002 7:05 pm

may I ask if an Asian becomes a U.S citizen, would you call he/she an authentic American?
yue
 

Re: Cantonese are not "authentic" Chinese

Postby ppk » Sat Jul 20, 2002 7:30 am

why not? 'americans' is just describing a certain 'nationality', what passport he or she holds, that is. its not stating a specific race. a black american or a white american or an asian american are equally authentic as long as they carry the american passport, and hold the american citizenship. 'americans' is a mixture of more than 200 races, just like the 'chinese' people is a mixture of many ancient races that roamed across the chinese land.
ppk
 

Re: Cantonese are not "authentic" Chinese

Postby yue » Sat Jul 20, 2002 8:38 pm

come on ppk, you have to be realistic. The whole world only considers an authentic american as someone who is a decendent of the Europeans. We all know that the world looks at black and asian american with a different notion of american. Let me give you an example. when my uncle went to the middle east and he told the locals that he's an american but the locals quickly responded that my uncle is not an "authentic american". You see how the world thinks of the word authentic!

btw, may i ask if one day somehow the state of vietnam is being annexed to china and the vietnamese and chinese start to intermarry each other. If 2200 years later, would you say the decendents of these interracial marriages are authentic chinese?
yue
 

Re: Cantonese are not "authentic" Chinese

Postby ppk » Sun Jul 21, 2002 3:50 am

ha. u will be branded as a racist in america. the europeans came much later than the aborigins, ie, the native indians. anyway u are contradicting urself. if u say the europeans, which came only after columbus discovered america, and conquered the aborigins, are the authentic americans, i dun see why the chinese which conquered the ancient viets in guangdong and guangxi, and formed the cantonese after that, cannot be authentic population of that area.

after the world war it is a common understanding that war is no longer the accepted way of solving international conflicts and the days of imperialism is long gone. so the situation where china annex vietnam will not possibly happen.
ppk
 

Re: Cantonese are not "authentic" Chinese

Postby James Campbell » Sun Jul 21, 2002 8:22 pm

Thomas,

This person, Yue, may or may not have been born in Vietnam, with or without a Vietnamese upbringing. But I can tell you, that Yue did not attend Vietnamese schools, based on one fact:

All Vietnamese go to school and learn how to read and write and know that their language has six tones, because this is the way it must be spelled in the writing. However, Yue was confused that it only had 5 tones (in a separate posting). If Yue had attended Vietnamese school growing up and became literate, he/she would know very clear, this matter.

This is also the reason why Yue could not spell Guangdong / Kwangtung (or even Quang Dong). It's what we call in Italian, uneducato, if you'll excuse my rudeness.

And Yue's address does show Los Angeles, California on the postings. And Yue claim's having an American uncle. So I have strong doubt about Yue being a Vietnamese-raised citizen.

I have to agree with Mark's and PPK's discussion about the languages. And instead of counting population size, take a look at percentage of population, which Mandarin has had about 75%. Even though the population was probably less than half the size 100 years ago, the percentages should still be approximate.

And according to what Thomas Chan said about 粵 and 越, I have to agree. That whole southern area of China from Fujian down to Vietnam was called Yue/Viet. 粵 is also pronounced Viet in Vietnamese. So based on pronunciation and disregarding character variations, they are all called by the same name.

Also, I don't think that Europeans should be called authentic Americans--they usually like to call themselves by the country they are from, ie French, Swiss, Italian, German, etc. So I think many Europeans would disagree. I believe most everybody can agree that American Indians with some 40,000 years of history on the continent can be considered authentic Americans. But most people now who hold US passports consider themselves Americans. But so do Colombians, Bolivians, Peruvians, Panamanians, etc. Anybody from North or South America can be called Americans, and most do call themselves this. So if you were born or are from North or South America, you can call yourself American. If you have a US Passport, you can call yourself a citizen of the United States of America. If you or your family is from Vietnam or elsewhere, then you are not Americans, whether or not you have a US passport. If you do have one, then you are a citizen of the United States of America, but you are not necessarily "American" in the sense that North and South Americans use the term.

So based on these terms, if you were born and raised in that environment and can say you are from that place, then you should be able to call yourself a person of that place. If you were not, but hold a passport for that place, then you are simply a citizen. Since Cantonese-speaking areas are all part of China now, then you're all citizens of China. However, some people were born and grew up in Hong Kong, which had a little bit of a different culture than in China, so some people from Hong Kong I'm sure like to distinguish themselves from being Chinese, even though the country is now unified.

If for example, Hong Kong were a large enough a territory and someday it were to split away from China, and everybody there identified themselves as Cantonese, something unique from Chinese, then I'm sure that many Cantonese people living within China would immigrate to this new territory for this sense of identity. This has happened many times in Europe. For example, when a Polish state was finally established, many Poles living in Eastern Europe or in Germany immigrated to Poland, because they had language and customs in common, even though these people never really had a country of their own before.

I would even go so far to say that if an island were discovered in the ocean by Hakkas and they claimed it as Hakka-land, I bet a majority of Hakkas would either move, or would at least go claim citizenship.

James C.
James Campbell
 

Re: Cantonese are not "authentic" Chinese

Postby yue » Mon Jul 22, 2002 1:45 am

james,

so u judge a person just by how well he/she can spell a word?

about the 5 or 6 tones stuff and the way they r spelled in the writing is irrelevant for southerners!

btw, my "sixth sense" also tells me that u also judge me on how well i write english. please forgive me for not being able to master my second language and believe me, throughtout my life i've never expected any non-viet to be able to write a single vietnamese word!
yue
 

Re: Cantonese are not "authentic" Chinese

Postby sfboy » Mon Jul 22, 2002 4:45 am

that's a very haste statement there, yue.
what do you mean "the way they are spelled in the writing is irrelevant for southerners?" if it is irrelevant then why don't southerners just eliminate the sixth tone from their writing? the fact that the writing identifies six tones means that there is supposed to be six tones in viet, the southerners have diverged from the original language.

concerning the original topic of this thread, I met this Uighur guy from college awhile ago. I know the government of China claims that he is Chinese. Hey, I would agree with the government too that he is Chinese, but the truth of the matter is, he's not. Why? He claims not to be Chinese and most of his people claim to be non-Chinese as well. We both came to the agreement that he is not Chinese.

the fact of the matter is, cantonese consider themselves chinese, all other chinese consider cantonese as chinese, and all other nations/peoples consider cantonese as chinese then cantonese are "authentic" chinese. isn't it as simple as that? It's not like the claim has no base, cantonese uses the same writing system, celebrate the same heroes and holidays, speak the same language, share the same history.

excuse me for being blunt but your claims that chinese are not authentic chinese are irrelevant since you have no say in "what cantonese people are". you're not even chinese!?! shouldn't the chinese decide who they are or who they want to be?

and also what makes someone an "authentic?" Say you were an asian born in the west and you only spoke english. your mindset is pretty much westernized even though you look asian enough. Are you an "authentic viet" or "authentic chinese"?
sfboy
 

Re: Cantonese are not "authentic" Chinese

Postby sfboy » Mon Jul 22, 2002 4:46 am

that's a very haste statement there, yue.
what do you mean "the way they are spelled in the writing is irrelevant for southerners?" if it is irrelevant then why don't southerners just eliminate the sixth tone from their writing? the fact that the writing identifies six tones means that there is supposed to be six tones in viet, the southerners have diverged from the original language.

concerning the original topic of this thread, I met this Uighur guy from college awhile ago. I know the government of China claims that he is Chinese. Hey, I would agree with the government too that he is Chinese, but the truth of the matter is, he's not. Why? He claims not to be Chinese and most of his people claim to be non-Chinese as well. We both came to the agreement that he is not Chinese.

the fact of the matter is, cantonese consider themselves chinese, all other chinese consider cantonese as chinese, and all other nations/peoples consider cantonese as chinese then cantonese are "authentic" chinese. isn't it as simple as that? It's not like the claim has no base, cantonese uses the same writing system, celebrate the same heroes and holidays, speak the same language, share the same history.

excuse me for being blunt but your claims that chinese are not authentic chinese are irrelevant since you have no say in "what cantonese people are". you're not even chinese!?! shouldn't the chinese decide who they are or who they want to be?

and also what makes someone an "authentic?" Say you were an asian born in the west and you only spoke english. your mindset is pretty much westernized even though you look asian enough. Are you an "authentic viet" or "authentic chinese"?
sfboy
 

Re: Cantonese are not "authentic" Chinese

Postby Isabella » Sun Sep 22, 2002 6:37 am

I haven't the time to read the posts yet, but I would just like to tell yue that I found your comments on us - Cantonese - very offensive!

Isabella
Isabella
 

Re: Cantonese are not "authentic" Chinese

Postby Mark » Mon Sep 23, 2002 11:11 pm

Yue, why haven't you ever expected a non-Vietnamese to spell a Vietnamese word correctly?

You dương vật, you ;)

Đồ ngu! You're a đồ ngu, and you know it too...

lol.
Mark
 
Posts: 134
Joined: Thu Feb 03, 2005 3:53 pm

Re: Cantonese are not "authentic" Chinese

Postby Sum Won » Sun Oct 20, 2002 11:01 pm

Before you call anyone a Do Ngu, you should at least be able to spell that correctly too. "ngu" gives a "ngoo" sound in English. As far as the "Đồ" goes along, I think it's spelled "Đu'u" with an accent mark going from the upper left to bottom right hand (Sorry, the computer I'm using doesn't have any Vietnamese-typing capabilities). Also on another note, many American-born VietNamese don't receive an education in the language, because it's usually too expensive for the parents, so that can't be Yue's fault. Even to learn Chinese, is a heavy burden on Chinese parents, for kids who go to schools that only teach French and Spanish for a foreign language, because the price for every TRImester at a Chinese-teaching institution, usually is about $110-$130 around the LA-Orange County regions. Also, the heavy concentration of VietNamese is in Westminster, which is a good drive, for people who like horrible parking and being baked in the sun. So to blame people who don't have an education in their won language, wouldn't be such a good idea...
Sum Won
 

Re: Cantonese are not "authentic" Chinese

Postby Mark » Fri Nov 08, 2002 7:00 am

You twat, I used a Anh-Viet "sutiern".
I'm not just spelling it from the back of my mouth.
So I right these time. Hahaha.
Mark
 
Posts: 134
Joined: Thu Feb 03, 2005 3:53 pm

Re: Cantonese are not "authentic" Chinese

Postby peter » Sat Nov 09, 2002 2:56 am

the gab-gol characters were found to be recorded in an ancient
Korean history book called 'Chun-bu-kyung' that was published during the
Koryeo dynasty, in the late 14-th century. As the gab-gol characters were
firstly found from relicts of the Yin dynasty in 1899 AD, it is highly
unlikely that the Koryeo author in the 14-th century would have copied the
gab-gol characters from relicts of the Yin dynasty in China. This suggests
that prototype of hanja (chinese character) was indeed Korean, because
Chun-bu-kyung is the oldest history book in Korea and it recorded the
original forms of the bone and shell characters.

Since 1961, bone and shell characters have been found in bones from Korea,
but this is the first time that they are recorded in the book. No known
Chinese history book recorded the forms of bone and shell characters. It is
expected that this finding will help decipher some bone and shell characters
that have not yet deciphered.

Detailed story is published in an academic paper (korean). You can read the
paper at http://www.hanja.com/plus/board/table/n ... ejong1.pdf
(you may need Korean fonts to read, but still you can see some pictures)
This paper also compares bone and shell characters between Yin, Koryeo
(Chun-bu-kyung) and great seal, together with some pictures of bone and
shell characters included in the Koryeo history book.

and regarding the "dong I", Ta wen k'ou, Lung-shan, Shang were essentially consists of "East I", whereas
Yangshao was essentially Chinese . Even most
Chinese archaeologists agree on this. Kwang-Chih Chang (1987) The Archaeology of Ancient China. Yale Univ.
peter
 
Posts: 6
Joined: Thu Feb 03, 2005 3:53 pm

Re: Cantonese are not "authentic" Chinese

Postby peter » Sat Nov 09, 2002 2:58 am

the gab-gol characters were found to be recorded in an ancient
Korean history book called 'Chun-bu-kyung' that was published during the
Koryeo dynasty, in the late 14-th century. As the gab-gol characters were
firstly found from relicts of the Yin dynasty in 1899 AD, it is highly
unlikely that the Koryeo author in the 14-th century would have copied the
gab-gol characters from relicts of the Yin dynasty in China. This suggests
that prototype of hanja (chinese character) was indeed Korean, because
Chun-bu-kyung is the oldest history book in Korea and it recorded the
original forms of the bone and shell characters.

Since 1961, bone and shell characters have been found in bones from Korea,
but this is the first time that they are recorded in the book. No known
Chinese history book recorded the forms of bone and shell characters. It is
expected that this finding will help decipher some bone and shell characters
that have not yet deciphered.

Detailed story is published in an academic paper (korean). You can read the
paper at http://www.hanja.com/plus/board/table/n ... ejong1.pdf
(you may need Korean fonts to read, but still you can see some pictures)
This paper also compares bone and shell characters between Yin, Koryeo
(Chun-bu-kyung) and great seal, together with some pictures of bone and
shell characters included in the Koryeo history book.

and regarding the "dong I", Ta wen k'ou, Lung-shan, Shang were essentially consists of "East I", whereas
Yangshao was essentially Chinese . Even most
Chinese archaeologists agree on this. Kwang-Chih Chang (1987) The Archaeology of Ancient China. Yale Univ.
peter
 
Posts: 6
Joined: Thu Feb 03, 2005 3:53 pm

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