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Say It Right Series

Pinyin and Punctuation

Posted by Purrfecdizzo August 31, 2012 in the Group General Discussion.

To my most esteemed fellow podcast listeners and Chinesepod teachers,

I was reviewing lessons today, and as I was looking at one of the dialogues, I saw how the sentences would have things in them like commas and the like. I sometimes see question marks and even quotation marks. I know that Chinese uses a system of quotation that is different to the one used by the English system. I was also thinking about pinyin. I see spaces, and the use of capital letters, but this strikes me as wrong, as The Chinese language does not have this characteristic; of recognizing proper nouns by the use of capitalization of the first letter of the name. All of these leave me with questions, as this type of thing is tolerated, accepted, and sometimes even embraced by Chinese people.

I know for myself, I would probably feel somewhat offended if someone tried to influence the English language in this way. Not to say that I believe that this type of thing is intentional. Even if it is intentional, I don't necessarily believe that the intent is supposed to be a negative one.

Well, I guess the only questions I have about this are 'Are the observations I have shared accurate?' and 'Is anyone else bothered by it?'

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