Intermediate Cantonese : A Grammar and Workbook book cover
2nd Edition

Intermediate Cantonese
A Grammar and Workbook

ISBN 9780415815611
Published February 15, 2017 by Routledge
212 Pages

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Book Description

Intermediate Cantonese is designed for learners who have achieved basic proficiency and wish to progress to more complex language.

Each of the 25 units combines clear, concise grammar explanations with communicatively oriented exercises to help build confidence and fluency.

Features include:

  • Many authentic examples from contemporary media, including films, advertising, songs and soap operas
  • Clear differentiation between colloquial and more formal speech registers
  • Up-to-date analysis of contemporary Cantonese as spoken in Hong Kong.

Suitable for independent learners and students on taught courses, Intermediate Cantonese, together with its sister volume, Basic Cantonese, forms a structured course of the essentials of Cantonese grammar.

Table of Contents



1 Consonants and vowels

2 Tone contours

3 Changed tones

4 Reduplication

5 Word formation

6 Verb-object compounds

7 Adjectives and stative verbs

8 Classifiers revisited

9 Topic and focus

10 Using jēung

11 Serial verbs

12 Aspect markers

13 Comparisons

14 Resultative and causative sentences with dou

15 Quantification

16 Negative sentences

17 Questions and answers

18 Relative clauses

19 Subordinate clauses

20 Conditional sentences

21 Reported speech

22 Cantonese speech conventions

23 Particles and interjections

24 Colloquial syntax

25 Code-mixing and loanwords

Key to exercises

Glossary of grammatical terms


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Virginia Yip is Professor at the Department of Linguistics and Modern Languages, The Chinese University of Hong Kong.

Stephen Matthews is Professor at the Department of Linguistics at the University of Hong Kong.

They are the authors of Basic Cantonese: A Grammar and Workbook (2000), Cantonese: A Comprehensive Grammar (1994, 2nd edition 2011), The Bilingual Child: Early Development and Language Contact (Cambridge University Press, 2007), and co-directors of the Childhood Bilingualism Research Centre.