Education Journal


1990.第18卷第1期(Vol. 18 No. 1).pp. 63–68



Prof. Xia Ji-an's Opinion on "To Write What We Talk"

李學銘(Hok-Ming LEE)




Although Prof. XIA ji-an's academic life was chiefly devoted to research on English and American literature, his professional knowledge and competence were not merely confined to English. On the subject of writtten Chinese, Prof. XIA frankly pointed out that the Chinese which we write nowadays consists, in fact, of "the elegance and the commonplace", "the ancient and the contemporary", "the east and the west". He did not think that one can really "write what one talks". According to him, many people may not be satisfied with phenomena of "mixing" in language, such phenomema are nevertheless hard facts of life. For Prof. XIA, the most important concern is to face such language phenomena squarely so that the language under discussion can be properly controlled and be allowed to develop, rather than dodging problems of "mixing" in language. His view provides, no doubt, much food for thought to researchers working in the field of written discourse in Chinese to Chinese language educators as well as those scholars who advocate "purity" in languages.