Loanwords in the Chinese Language  book cover
1st Edition

Loanwords in the Chinese Language

ISBN 9780367674601
Published August 1, 2022 by Routledge
286 Pages 1 B/W Illustrations

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Book Description

A loanword, or wailaici, is a word with similar meaning and phonetic form to a word from a foreign language that has been naturalized in the recipient language. From ancient times, cultural exchanges between China and other countries has brought and integrated a myriad of loanwords to the Chinese language. Approaching the topic from a diachronic perspective, this volume is the first book-length work to chart the developmental trajectory, features, functions, and categories of loanwords into Chinese.

Beginning with a general introduction to the Chinese loanword system, the author delves deeper to explore trends and standardization in Chinese loanword studies and the research landscape of contemporary loanword studies more generally. Combining theoretical reflections with real-life examples of Chinese loanwords, the author discusses not only long-established examples from the dictionary but also a great number of significant loanwords adopted in the 21st century. The author shows how the complexity of the Chinese loanword system is intertwined with the intricacies of the Chinese character system.

This title will be an essential reference for students, scholars, and general readers who are interested in Chinese loanwords, linguistics, and language and culture.

Table of Contents

1. Chinese loanwords: an external influence on the native language. 2. A historical overview of Chinese loanwords. 3.The characteristics and functions of loanwords. 4.Classification of Chinese loanwords. 5.Trends in and standardization of Chinese loanwords. 6. An overview of Chinese loanword studies.

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Shi Youwei is Professor at Meikai University, Associate Professor of Minzu University of China, Guest Professor of Osaka University of Foreign Studies, and Professor of Nanchang University. His main research interests include modern Chinese grammar, loanwords in the Chinese Language, and teaching Chinese as a foreign language.