Tag Archives: history


Interview with Dashan: Chinese science fiction and the history of comedy in China

By  Customer Service

This month, Cypress Books caught up with Mark Rowswell, better known throughout China and beyond as Dashan. He first made his name by performing 相声 (xiangsheng) or ‘crosstalk’, a kind of vaudevillian form of traditional comedic dialogue in the ‘straight man/funny man’ format. Having moved away from that some time ago, he’s spent the last few years exploring the nascent stand-up comedy scene in China.  Continue reading

Mar 17

Why Study a Chinese Dialect?

By  Grace


To celebrate 2016 International Mother Language Day, this blog post is dedicated to the beautiful languages and dialects of China!

When I mention an interest in learning Chinese dialects, I am almost always met with the same response: What’s the point? Their reasoning is clear: Mandarin Chinese is the lingua-franca in China and the importance of dialects is decreasing, so there seems little point in struggling to learn a Chinese dialect. I, however, argue that there are huge economic, cultural and social benefits of learning a Chinese dialect both inside and outside China. The value of Mandarin as a lingua-franca is clear, however, a brief look below the surface illuminates a plethora of reasons why someone may pursue the study of a Chinese dialect.

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Feb 16