Posted by Joel Martinsen on Thursday, December 6, 2007 at 7:11 PM
"You Are No. 1"
The photo at left is of Andy's frequent co-star Sammi Cheng, also an East Asia artist, presenting him with a congratulatory wall hanging that her father wrote with his left hand (he lost the use of his right hand to a stroke). The characters read "You Are No. 1!"
That's not a translation: the Cantonese pronunciation of the characters 腰呀冧吧温! ("yiu a nam ba wan!") approximates the English sentence.
The problem for the mainland media is that most people aren't familiar with Cantonese pronunciation, so they have no way to judge whether their interpretation is correct. The Beijing News, for example, misidentified the character 腰 as , and the character , which doesn't exist in Mandarin, doesn't show up on many newspaper websites.
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Books on China
The Eurasian Face : Blacksmith Books, a publishing house in Hong Kong, is behind The Eurasian Face, a collection of photographs by Kirsteen Zimmern. Below is an excerpt from the series:
Big in China: An adapted excerpt from Big In China: My Unlikely Adventures Raising A Family, Playing The Blues and Becoming A Star in China, just published this month. Author Alan Paul tells the story of arriving in Beijing as a trailing spouse, starting a blues band, raising kids and trying to make sense of China.
Pallavi Aiyar's Chinese Whiskers: Pallavi Aiyar's first novel, Chinese Whiskers, a modern fable set in contemporary Beijing, will be published in January 2011. Aiyar currently lives in Brussels where she writes about Europe for the Business Standard. Below she gives permissions for an excerpt.
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+ Korean history doesn't fly on Chinese TV screens (2007.09): SARFT puts the kibbosh on Korean historical dramas.
+ Religion and government in an uneasy mix (2008.03): Phoenix Weekly (凤凰周刊) article from October, 2007, on government influence on religious practice in Tibet.
+ David Moser on Mao impersonators (2004.10): I first became aware of this phenomenon in 1992 when I turned on a Beijing TV variety show and was jolted by the sight of "Mao Zedong" and "Zhou Enlai" playing a game of ping pong. They both gave short, rousing speeches, and then were reverently interviewed by the emcee, who thanked them profusely for taking time off from their governmental duties to appear on the show.