代写essay论文-Influence of Chinese on English Communication
With the development of economy and the frequent international communication, English has a great impact on Chinese language. People use transliteration, free translation or verbatim translation to apply this language in different area in China from the middle of the 19th century. It’s a seemingly trend to see many Chinese people speaking their native language with English words mixed in the conversation. However, study had shown that the concept of language transfer had made long lasting impact from both Chinese and English communication that had long lasting effect on both country and culture. This paper aim to address the influence on both Chinese and English.
Language transfer is an important factor in foreign language communication. The negative Chinese transfer exists in English communication on levels of word, phrase, sentence and disclosure. Chinese English users should compare and analyze the English and Chinese language consciously, helping improve the ability of correct English communication. The influence from the Chinese language on English user however represent the notion that how root of a language is developed in both a word level and a linguistic study.
The concept “language transfer” was proposed in the study of the second language acquisition. This topic argued that the language transfer meant that the users consciously or unconsciously dealt with the target language information using the mother tongue’s rules in the second language or foreign language learning because they were not familiar with the grammar rules of target language. The effect of the native language may be positive or negative. The similarities between the target language and native language is helpful for the second language learning, namely the positive transfer; while the differences between them will cause the learning difficulties and lead to errors, namely the negative transfer. In the foreign language communication, the language users will be affected by their native language in different degrees. English and Chinese belong to the different language families with many obvious differences reflected in all languages and pragmatic level. This paper discusses the differences between English and Chinese from the perspective of words, phrases, sentences and discourses, and puts forward the corresponding strategies to reduce the barriers of negative Chinese transfer for English communication.
1. Word level
(1) Context dependence of word
The English and Chinese have different word evolution process. English words evolve through the semantic extension (i.e., give new meanings to old words through the semantic extension and metaphor) (Li 210), while Chinese combine two syllables or morphemes into the words with the fixed meaning. There are a lot of words in Chinese made up of more than one syllable, for example: TV=electricity +vision= electric +vision=television
Wallet =钱+包=money +bag=wallet/purse
The differences in the word evolution reflect the different context dependence. English vocabulary has ambiguity generally, and the same word has the different meaning in different context, thus it is highly context-dependent. In Chinese, the word made up of two syllables (morphemes) has the single meaning, thus it is less context-dependent.
The different context dependence can bring potential difficulties to the English communication of Chinese, because the English communication is through the direct expression and symbols, while Chinese adopt the obscure indirect way in expressing feelings and transiting information (Lin 209). Sometimes the listener cannot fully understand the English spoken by Chinese, not because the pronunciation of words or grammar is not correct, but the listener lacks the context cues of speaker’s communicative intention. Indicating it will help improve the confidence of the English expression for Chinese, and it is also needed to pay attention to cultivating the English communicative strategies; in other words, the speaker make their expression more clearly by providing additional context information.
Inflection is the distinguishing feature of English, and it changes the grammatical meaning of the word by adding the inflectional morphemes and reflects the grammatical function of word in the sentence. The inflection of English nouns is reflected in the change of number, case and masculine or feminine; the inflection of verb is reflected through the tense, voice, style, etc (Kwan 19). However, Chinese is the non-inflectional language, and the syntax and semantic relationship is realized through using functional words and functional processing for sentence order (Zhiying 221). The inflection form in English, such as “… never seemed to have happened…”, “…had never happened…” and “…never seem to happen…” has no corresponding form in Chinese. Chinese words show the neutral characteristics without the word form, for example, Chinese verbs have no bare form, the gerund form and past participle; therefore, the Chinese an advanced stage may also say “I am interesting in…” etc.
China’s English user can recite English grammar rules expertly, but not good at applying grammar rules into language practice. In the process of transforming the declarative knowledge into the procedural knowledge, the simple grammar rules teaching and language practice are limited. Schmidt (1993) thought that the subconscious learning would not happen, and the attention was the necessary condition to transform the receiving (information input) into absorbing (acquisition) (Chen 7). Therefore, users can recognize the errors in their own writing or realize the language deviation in oral or written input more consciously through regular FAC (find, analysis and correct).
- Phrase/sentence level
(1) The position of preposition in sentence
The modern English grammar stipulates that the preposition should be placed in front of the noun phrases (pro-preposition), such as “at school” and “in the hospital” (Pasquarella 93). And English prepositions have many language functions, bringing challenges to China’s English users, so it is needed to understand and master the application of English preposition. In addition to the daily intensive training, users can also learn the meaning and example sentences of English prepositions through the British National Corpus (BNC).
(2) Word order of noun modifiers
The English noun modifiers are divided into the pre-modifiers and post-modifiers. Most Chinese scholars argue that Chinese noun modifiers are the pre-modifiers. For example, Wang Kang and Xiao Yan (1981) thought that in modern Chinese, the modifier should be placed in front of the modified word. Shen Jiaxuan (1996) pointed out that the modifiers were always in front and the central words were always in the rear in Chinese. Wang Wuxing (2003) proposed that the position of attributive in Chinese was usually in front of the noun, and it was also true even there were a few attributives or the long phrase was used as the attributive (Jiang 113). For example, He won’t wear any clothes [which will make him different from others]. Chinese: He won’t wear any [which will make him different from others] DE clothes; therefore, English-speaking people can add the modifiers behind the noun or verb freely, while many Chinese people will consider all the application of English modifiers, and tend to add modifiers before the noun or verb, which is more obvious in English oral communication (Braine 412). Therefore, the necessary verbal hints will help offset the negative influence caused by the language differences; for example “let me think for a few seconds before I answer your question” or “I am thinking out loud, so if anything that I say is unclear to you, please feel free to tell me”. Such verbal hints show that the speaker needs some time to respond to the questions, or it allows the listener to interrupt when it is needed for the speaker to explain.
- Discourse level
(1) Topic prominence or subject prominence
English is the typical “subject-prominence” language, while Chinese is the “topic-prominence” language. The topic of Chinese is one of the most important grammatical features. Li & Thompson (1981) regarded the “topic-prominence” as one of the sentence structure characteristics of Chinese different from other language. The difference is due to the different features of verb conceptualization between the two languages. Wu Jing, Shi Yuzhi (2005) believed that English verbs were sensitive to the vector characteristics of behavior. In grammar, the subject (starting point of vector) and object (stopping point of vector) of verbs are required to be marked (Lam 2). However, the Chinese verbs are not sensitive to the vector characteristics of behavior, so in the grammar, the subject or object does not need to appear simultaneously, and the subject and object can be freely moved to the beginning of the sentence, realizing the topicalization. These differences make China’s English users use some forms of English sentences too frequently, such as “It is said that…”, “It is reported that…” and so on, to express the topic and avoid the individualism by removing the subject “I” in the sentence. Therefore, in the process of English communication, however, we also notice this trend had flown with the immigrants in American that we see the trend of word starting with “It is said… etc.” The “subject-prominence” of English, and increases the sensitivity of English major structure in English expression had create this interesting phenomena; at the same time, they should also realize that removing the subject “I” does not necessarily make their expression more objective (Yeung 49).
(2) Relative position of the main clause and subordinate clause
There are some differences between both English and Chinese discourse patterns. In the complex sentence, the main clause is before the subordinate clause in English, while the subordinate clause tends to be put before the main clause in Chinese; in other words, express the main meaning before introducing the background information, which is the indirect mode of thinking. For example:
Because it always rains recently, the sports meeting has to be delayed.
Literal translation: Because recently always rain, so sports meeting delayed
English expression: Because it always rains recently, the sports meeting has to be delayed.
In the English sentences expressing the causal relationship, the conjunction (“because”) is put in front of the sentence, which belongs to the marked syntactic structure; the non-marked expression should be: the sports meeting has to be delayed, because it always rain recently.
Carl Braam pointed out in Contradiction of Way of Thinking that:
“the mutual understanding and harmonious relationship between the world’s peoples are blocked, not only due to the complex and diverse language forms, also due to the difference of thinking mode; that is to say, because of the difference of determining the source of knowledge and methodical thinking method.” (Lam 223)
Therefore, the strengthen the comparison of difference between English and Chinese thinking modes, and master the expression habits of English, and express in English in a more direct and clear way had made these two language quite conflicting but also influential.
(3) Thematic structure: the relative position of known and unknown information
Information structure includes two parts, the theme and rhyme. The theme is the starting point of information, while the rhyme is the part except theme, namely the narrative part around the theme (Halliday 139). The speaker place an element of sentence at the beginning of the sentence to guide the listener’s attention or to inform the listener’s the viewpoint. Through replacing the theme in each sentence, the speaker can guide the listener’s attention to the central meaning (Lin 87). China’s English users may not be aware of the theme structure of English, namely the known information before the unknown information. Chinese tends to place the unknown information in front. If the unknown information is placed in front in the English, it will lead to the loss of theme value related to the discourse continuity and rhetorical meaning. However, English language user had also come up with solution to this language difference, we see the increasing amount usage of “I guess” in the English language to make sure the subject of matter is located in an unknown status without any further implication.
China’s users will deal with the themes in English writing by intuition and experience, so it is necessary to improve the sensitivity to the theme structure of English, treat the sentence theme carefully in writing, because the theme is the meaningful and purposeful choice guiding the readers.
This paper briefly discusses the Chinese language transfer influencing the English communication. It is proved that the transfer exists in all levels of language structure. China’s English users should learn to identify the language factors that can cause the failure of cross-language communication, conduct the comparison analysis of English-Chinese language consciously, and improve the ability of using words, grammar and rhetoric correctly, so as to promote the English learning and improve the English communicative competence.