Although I have a few texts here on Pinyin Info written in Pinyin, most of them aren’t long and are usually conversions from texts written in Chinese characters. So it is with very great pleasure that I announce the Internet release of an extensive and important essay by Zhang Liqing (???,???) that was written in Pinyin originally: Hànzì Bù Tèbié Bi?oyì.
Here is the opening:
Dàdu?shù huì Hànzì de rén rènwéi Hànzì shì bi?oyì wénzì. Jiù shì shu? Hànzì g?n biéde wénzì bù y?yàng, bùbì y?kào f?y?n huòzh? biéde y?yán tiáojiàn; y? ge rén zh?yào xuéhuì le h?n du? Hànzì, kànjian Hànzì xi? de d?ngxi jiù zh?dao shì shénme yìsi.
Zhè dàdu?shù rén yòu kàndào li?ng jiàn shìqing. Dì-y?, Hànzì zài Zh?ngguó liánxù yòng le s?nqi?n du? nián, bìngqi? dào xiànzài hái zài yòng. Dì-èr, Hànzì zài D?ng-Yà j? ge guóji? liúchuán le h?n cháng y? duàn shíji?n. Yúshì, t?men y?u tu?xi?ng ch? li?ng ge jiélùn. Y? ge shu? Hànzì ch?oyuè shíji?n; lìngwài y? ge shu? Hànzì ch?oyuè k?ngji?n. Gu?bìng q?lai jiù shì Hànzì bi?oyì, k?y? ch?oyuè shí-k?ng. Zuìhòu gèng jìny?bù, b? Hàny? y? l?jìnlái, shu? Hànzì zuì shìhé Hàny?.
Shàngmiàn de kànf? hé jiélùn “g?n sh?n dì gù”, dànshì bùxìng d?u h?n piànmiàn, bù fúhé zh?nzhèng qíngkuàng. Wèishénme ne? H?n ji?nd?n….
Nothing would make me happier than for Mandarin teachers the world over to distribute this work to their students, for it’s much more than an exercise in Pinyin; it’s an essay with important points to make about the nature of Chinese characters. (And, yes, O teachers of the world, the copyright terms do allow you to reprint this.)
This essay appeared originally in 1991, in the Sino-Platonic Papers release of Schriftfestschrift: Essays on Writing and Language in Honor of John DeFrancis on His Eightieth Birthday, so some of you may have seen it already. But the full Schriftfestschrift is a whopping 15 MB, while this essay is a more manageable 759 KB PDF.
This special release of this article is in honor of the seventieth birthday this month of Zhang, some of whose work appears here at Pinyin Info. So, after reading Hanzi bu tebie biaoyi, I recommend that you turn to her translations of Lü Shuxiang (first seen here on this site!) and Zhou Youguang:
- Comparing Chinese Characters and a Chinese Spelling Script — an evening conversation on the reform of Chinese characters, by Lyu Shuxiang
- The Historical Evolution of Chinese Languages and Scripts, by Zhou Youguang (scroll down to find links to the various readings)
Those readings are also available in the original Mandarin:
- traditional characters: ??????? ?? —-????? ??, ???
- simplified characters: ??????? ?? —-????? ??, ???
- traditional characters: ?????????, ??? (scroll down to find links to the various readings)
- simplified characters: ?????????, ??? (scroll down to find links to the various readings)
In addition to being a writer, educator, and translator, Zhang is an associate editor of the excellent ABC Chinese-English Comprehensive Dictionary, which is by far my favorite Mandarin-English dictionary.
Happy birthday, Liqing!