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Friday, August 27, 2010

Character Amnesia in Chinese

Lots of thoughts out about how technology is altering aspects of literacy. This article from Language Log, about how text messaging is influencing Chinese characters. From the language log:

" ... Pessimists and alarmists have long been lamenting the negative impact of computers upon the ability of Chinese to write characters by hand. See, for example, Jennifer 8. Lee's article entitled "In China, Computer Use Erodes Traditional Handwriting, Stirring a Cultural Debate" in the Technology section of the New York Times for February 1, 2001.

If the situation was bad already a decade ago, it is far more grave now that short text messaging is so wildly popular. In "China worries about losing its character(s)," Los Angeles Times (July 12, 2010), Barbara Demick provides graphic evidence of the starkly diminishing powers of supposedly literate Chinese to produce many characters that are essential for daily usage ... "

Also see the following article ... The comments in both posts are also interesting.

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