Understanding the Chinese Language provides a vibrant and comprehensive introduction to contemporary Chinese linguistics. Combining an accessible style with an in-depth treatment of the topics at hand, it uses clear, full descriptions and vivid, modern examples to systematically take students through the phonology, vocabulary, grammar, discourse structures and pragmatics of modern Chinese. No prior knowledge of Chinese or linguistics is required.
Written by a highly experienced instructor, researcher and linguist, Understanding the Chinese Language will be essential reading for undergraduate and postgraduate students taking courses in Chinese linguistics. It will also be of interest to anyone interested in learning more about Chinese language and culture.
"Understanding the Chinese Language is an excellent introductory textbook for Chinese linguistics. This book provides a systematic, in-depth, and seminal explanation of Chinese linguistics and its efforts in comparing English and Chinese and using vivid and authentic examples make it very accessible." Han Luo, Northwestern University, USA
"Teaching Chinese linguistics can be very challenging but this book has made the task a lot easier. Dr Shei’s use of authentic data (language used on TV reality shows and messages on social networks) to illustrate how the Chinese language really works is highly effective. He skilfully adopts various linguistic frameworks to examine Chinese sentence types. He also proposes new approaches, which include using concepts to define Chinese lexical items (i.e. words). Anybody who is interested in understanding how the Chinese language works will benefit from reading this book." Kan Qian, The Open University, UK.
Forward. Introduction 1.Chinese sounds 2. Chinese words 3. Chinese sentences 4. Speech acts 5. Sentence final particles 6. Chinese neologisms on the web