Tag: Chinese

Tibetan Language Advocate Freed

Tashi Wangchuk, a Tibetan language rights activist who was imprisoned by the Chinese government on charges of inciting separatism, has been released upon completing a five-year sentence. Wangchuk was featured in a 2015 documentary by the New York Times, which detailed his efforts to advocate against the government’s linguistic assimilation of ethnic minorities; this same documentary was used as...

US Looks to Taiwan for Chinese

Beautiful orange sunset on Zhongxiao Road in Taipei
Through the American Institute in Taiwan (AIT) and the Taipei Economic and Cultural Representative Office (TECRO), the U.S. and Taiwan have launched the U.S.-Taiwan Education Initiative, which is aimed at “expanding access to Mandarin and English language instruction, while safeguarding academic freedom.” The move comes after Confucius Institutes have closed across university campuses in America due to concerns that they promote China’s agenda. To mark the launch, U.S. Deputy Secretary for Education...

Chinese Progresses as a World Language

More than 70 countries have officially incorporated Chinese language teaching into their national education systems, including the UK, Russia, South Africa, Japan, South Korea, and Australia, according to Tian Xuejun, China’s vice minister of education. Speaking at last month’s opening ceremony of the International Chinese Language Education Week 2020, Tian said that over 4,000 colleges across the globe have added...

State Dept Promotes Critical Language Learning

The U.S. Department of State has launched a new website, Languages.State.Gov with the intention of developing a “new generation of critical language speakers.”  The website aims to be a one-stop platform for U.S. government language programs resource where Americans can take a quiz to identify language programs that fit their goals and explore U.S. government scholarships and other resources.  The website will categorize...

Controversy over USC Professor for Using Chinese Expression

A USC Professor is under fire for using a Chinese expression that sounds like an English-language slur. The professor, who was suspended, came under fire from a group of students who wrote a letter and signed it by, "Black MBA candidates c/o 2022." Professor Greg Patton of USC's Marshall School of Business was teaching a ​communications class via Zoom...

DC Confucius Institute Designated as ‘Diplomatic Mission’

The U.S. State Department has designated the Confucius Institute U.S. (CIUS) Center, in Washington, DC, as a diplomatic mission, which will require it to regularly provide information to the State Department about its Chinese personnel, recruiting, funding, and operations in the U.S.  The headquarters CIUS manages and provides funding for Chinese-language teachers and classes across the country, including university-level classes...

Confucius Institutes Refocus on Chinese Language

Chengdu, Old and New (Temples, Shopping District, and Modern City Center) - Chengdu, China
China’s Confucius Institutes, which have become the backbone of the country’s worldwide soft power strategy, are being rebranded in the face of widespread criticism. The institutes, launched in 2004, are public educational partnerships between colleges and universities in China and like institutions in other countries, managed by the Hanban, a division of the Chinese Ministry of Education. The stated...

‘No Barrier’ to Chinese Becoming ‘Global Language’

Australian author and professor Dr. Jeffrey Gil, of Flinders University in Adelaide, claims there is “no barrier” stopping Chinese becoming a “global language” like English, as universal literacy is not required for a global language status.“There is a flawed assumption that all learners of Chinese must learn to read and write to a native-like level—although this does not reflect...

International Poll Reveals Language Choices

According to recent international research by YouGov, English is accepted as the most important language for children to learn, but Chinese is catching up fast. The YouGov–Cambridge Centre partnered with the Guardian and the Bennett Institute for Public Policy at Cambridge University to produce the YouGov–Cambridge Globalism Project: a new annual study and the largest of its kind on...

Over 400 Languages May Have Originated in China

A new study by Menghan Zhang at Fudan University in Shanghai and his colleagues recently published in Nature explored the origin of Sino-Tibetan languages and determined they may have originated in China rather than India as previously believed. The Sino-Tibetan language family comprises more than 400 languages including Chinese, Tibetan, Burmese, Mandarin, and Cantonese. The group of languages is...
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