THE DORK REPORT: Tattoos & T-shirts make Chinese culture trivial

Before Alaric Dearment went back to Ball State University to pursue a degree in Journalism, he has spent several years living in China.

In today’s Ball State Daily News, his column “The Dork Report” has turned the spotlight on Americans who are embraced in the “Asian Craze”.

(link & pdf)

One example he used in his article was .

I've seen T-shirts and tattoos with the Chinese character interpreted to mean "harmony." But many people don't know that while can mean "harmony," in modern parlance most Chinese speakers use it to mean "and" or "with."

While I was reading Dearment’s article, Andrew approached me with a very fundamental philosophical question:
"Is the propagation of knowledge [of languages] a good thing, even when we know that it is often misused?"

My answer?

The answers are both yes and no. Yes, if they are done correctly. No, if one culture is simply exploiting the other for their own instant gratification.

Related: China - Use Accurate English to Welcome the Olympics


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