Stephen A. Schwarzman, founder of financial services giant Blackstone, has announced a $100 million (¥600 million) personal gift to build and endow an elite scholarship program in China A simultaneous fundraising campaign with a goal of raising $200 million (¥1.2 billion) will make the program the largest charitable effort in China’s history with funds coming largely from outside the...

Taiwan's Languages The languages and dialects spoken in Taiwan have their origins in the Austronesian and Han lingual systems. The Austronesian languages are spoken by Taiwan's indigenous peoples, while most common Han dialects - Minnanese and Hakka - are primarily used by those whose ancestors immigrated from China's Fujian and Guangdong Provinces, respectively, four centuries ago. In 1949,...

The inexorable rise of Chinese in Africa is continuing with Nigeria’s University of Lagos starting its first degree program in Chinese. At least 25 students have been admitted into the University of Lagos in southwestern Nigeria to study the Chinese language at degree level in the institution. Duro Oni, the university deputy chancellor in charge of management services, disclosed...

Archeologists in China are debating the significance of recently discovered inscriptions dating back 3,000 years. The Global Times, China’s state-run newspaper, reported that the inscriptions, unearthed at the Zhuangqiaofen archaeological site in the eastern province of Zhejiang, had been confirmed as the earliest record of Chinese characters. However, researchers are divided over whether characters found on artifacts at a Neolithic graveyard...

Mainland China and Taiwan are putting aside their tense history to work together closely on a joint language report about their respective dialects of the Chinese language, according to a state- ment by the PRC’s Ministry of Education. The report will explore how the language has evolved since it crossed the Taiwan Strait and the variations that persist today. The plan...

The Chinese Ministry of Education has approved setting up of two more Confucius institutes in Pakistan, according Pakistan’s Ambassador to the country, Masood Khan. Writing in Pakistan’s Daily Times, Khan remarked on the cultural ties between the nations prior to new Chinese Premier Li Keqiang’s  visit to Pakistan on his first visit abroad, “which demonstrates the significance China attaches to...

An article on the Hong Kong Education Bureau’s website claiming “Cantonese is not an official language” has been removed after criticism. The article, posted on the Language Learning Support site last month, aimed to promote the importance of bilingualism and trilingualism as the city “develops alongside the rapidly growing China” and “the daily usage of Mandarin becomes common.” It...

While the obivous place to go to learn Chinese is, well, China, it's sometimes easy to forget that for quite a while after the communist takeover on the mainland, Taiwan (officially the Republic of China) was the only "China" recognized by the Western world. Global politics aside, Chairman Mao's victory has resulted in some lingering after-effects for Mandarin...