). (Taiwan,) A Modern Nation Through Her Language
by. Liim Keahioong, Taiwan EDUTECH Foundation

  .  .  .  .    . to Mixet-Taiwanese.  .  to EDUTECH Entry Page
    By the beginning of 17th century, William Shakespeare transformed the savage tongue of England into the elegant classics of English literature.    This language then gradually developed into the modern English of today through the evolution of human society in the past four hundred years.    We know that a language of a nation is not simply the instinct chattering of a person through the natural ability of speech that he acquired through his own life, but is constructed with a great many portions of knowledge of the whole humankind at the time being.   What is more, the most important part of a language is that it has a capacity for future development along any possible change of that society.   A language should show the evolutionary course of that nation but also a promise of her future.

      As for a nation with culture, a unified language is the base for unity of people.    How great it was to hear people sing and say "We, American!" after the 911 tragedy.   It is a common word linking the mind of each person.   Why, then, we don't sing and say "We, Taiwanese!" for our national unity for progress?    In the midst of this, however, what will happen if somebody jumps out and shouts, "Oh, no, we are not, we are Daiwanese!"?    Even a single word of the common language works as a hook to seduce the deep emotional mind of people, so we say the human society is bound by her language.
      Sociologists admit that the majority of human thought is the soundless language.    We get idea from books and other written sources much more than from what we hear.    Abstract concept, in particular, is acquired and transmitted through the written language.    This written language influences the construction of the human idea and so created the system of modern thought and established the institution of the society.  In most cases, the terminology of a new concept is recognized by its written word rather than a certain oral sound.
      Continued usage of Chinese characters for well established terminology in Taiwanese documents is preferred, in two respects.   First, Taiwanese people has received Mandarin education in which most abstract concepts are taught with terms of Chinese characters, so the Chinese terminology in the document does directly reflect the idea more than the corresponding Taiwanese sound.   And, second, a popular term in Chinese characters may be accepted by readers regardless of their native tongues.   For instance, the Taiwanese word of "PARADISE" is pronounced by majority of southern people as "loghngg" while people in Gilaan area pronounce it as "loghvuii"; the terminology in Chinese characters is the same.
      Chinese characters, however, will meet two difficulties.   First of which is the educational process that requires more time and labor for children at their elementary stage.    And the second is its resistance toward the modernization of Taiwanese people in this computer age.
       Now, everybody knows that Chinese character is absolutely inadequate for Taiwanese colloquial words, especially for so many mono-syllable words which construct a large part of Taiwanese verbs.   Many colloquial words in Chinese characters as suggested by Sinologists are not unique, that is the word can be read and explained in more than one way.  One may borrow a character to represent the word, but nobody can guess while reading the whole sentence what its adequate pronunciation nor meaning is.   Somebody suggests to use thousands of special characters which do not exist in the standard set of 4800 Chinese characters taught in Taiwan.
       Since colloquial words occupy the main part of Taiwanese language for elementary stage of education, it is advised to use alphabetic letters for kindergarten and in early stage of elementary school.   The spelling system developed since 1943 and now known as TMSS (Taiwanese Modern Spelling System) is the most adequate lettering system for texts of that stage.   Not being a phonetic system that requires an introspective analysis of voice, those vocabulary in TMSS are simply to be "recognized" and remembered just like those of all Western languages.
       A way of arranging those TMSS words in accord with Taiwanese grammar was developed since early 1950's by the author while translating Western literature into Taiwanese.    The scheme of arrangement is called MLT, the Modern Literal Taiwanese.    The intentional aiming at the "grammar" is the keypoint of MLT.    Usage of Chinese characters is acceptable.   But, to be grammatically explicit, the word-oriented TMSS vocabulary is recommended over the character-wise arrangement of Chinese way of writing;  the result is MLT/TMSS (MLT by TMSS) or Totally Latinized MLT.
     During 1980's, the study of automated treatment of Taiwanese document with computer was carried out privately, while chemical research papers such as "automated syntactic analysis of chemical structural notation" were published around 1978 by the author.     An advanced idea of Formal-MLT appeared through that study, following Dr. Noam Chomsky's novel grammatical concept of Formal Language.   By the end of the last century, the idea was published on the internet website, and the idea of International Agency Language with Formal-MLT was first explained and demonstrated in the November Issue of MLT in order to elevate Taiwanese language as an internationally useful one, especially as the East-West cultural exchange medium.
     Since 1997, an Modern Literal Taiwanese website, http://www.edutech.org.tw, started on the Internet.    The intention is to show to the world that Taiwanese people has her own literal culture, with which we are now able to express ourselves with a totally Latinized writing similar to those of Western world or with a mixed writing with Chinese characters analogous to Japanese language.   There is a promise as well as a demonstration that Taiwanese people with such a language system is a modern nation without any doubt.
     Now remained is only that, under the today's general educational system, Taiwanese people will accept it over the backward Mandarin system or not.     The MLT/TMSS accepts all possible technical terms of foreign origin in a direct way, that is, without translating them first into Chinese characters of Mandarin pronunciation and then reread them with Taiwanese pronunciation.   All technical documents including science textbooks used in the university are easily translated into MLT/TMSS.    Even a machine translation will become hopeful.   Thus, we will be synchronized with advanced nations all over the world.
     All Chinese classics have already their colloquial translations in Taiwan.   Retranslating these into MLT will be without problem.    Rhymes in those old poetry can be kept intact by utilizing TMSS as its phonetics.    Thus, every doubt of Sinologists can be resolved when we adopt the modern literal system of Taiwanese language.     Modernization of Taiwanese Literature can be accomplished once they abandon their uneasiness that the modernization could be anti-classics.     Actually, Taiwanese will remain as Taiwanese, but only the obstacle toward the future development is removed.     The Taiwanese society will become open for the future through the modernization by the renewing of our language system.
A Modern Nation Through Her Language                     submitted to NATPA on February 11, 2002

(. Ho  Taioaan Iuu  Gwbuun  Cviazox  Hiexntaixhoax-Kokkaf 
Liim Keahioong
Taioaan IOGTEG Bunkaux-Kikimhoe

  .  .  .  . ..    . Engbuun-parn..Ym-Haxn Hunhap-buun .  . 
        17-seakie-zhof yzeeng, William Shakespeare ciofng Engkheklaan ee thofoe zoafn'voa-zox iugvar ee koftiern-Engbuun.    Cit'ee gwbuun ciu ti koeakhix ee siepah'nii-tiofng, baxnban suxntioh jinlui-siaxhoe ee cirnhoax, cirntiern cviazox Hiexntai-Engbuun.   Larn lorng zay, cidee kokkaf ee gwgieen mxsi ti hiaf ee laang eng svy
+laai ee kautaam-lenglek laai sui'ix teq korng ee oexguo naxtvia, ar khioksi eng tongtai zoan'jinlui ee tieseg laai korseeng ee.    Cirn'cidpo laai korng, gwgieen ee zoex-tioxng'iaux ee poxhun si y thafng toeatioh hit'ee siaxhoe ee itzhex khorleeng ee piernchiefn, laai hoattiern ee lenglek.    Gwgieen tioh hiernsi kokkaf ti koeakhix sor-iefnhoax ee tokexng, ar tongsii tioh ho laang tuix kokkaf ee bixlaai oe khvoarzhud hibang.

        Tuix cidee u-bunhoax ee kokkaf laai korng, thorng'id ee gwgieen si bincioxng kaxngsym ee kishor.   Tngf larn ti 911-zhafm'axn-y'au thviatioh laang teq chviux-korng "Larn, Bykog-laang!" ee sii u  joaxniq'toa ee karmtong+aq.   Zef si lienkied-tioh muy'cidee laang ee laixsym ee kioxngtoong-oexkux.   Larn naf'm laai uixtioh kokkaf ee cirntiern ia chviux-korng "Larn, Taioaan-laang!" leq?    Ti cit'ee sizun, na uxlaang thiaux-zhutlaai jiarng-korng "Oh, mxtioh, larn mxsi.   Larn si Daioaan-laang!", afnny oe u symmih taixcix hoatsefng?    Kioxngtoong ee gwgieen-tiofng ee cidkux oe, ia oe cviazox boeq kaw-zhud zernglaang simtoea ee zengsu, sofie larn korng, jinlui-siahoe si eng y ee gwgieen laai svalieen ee.
       Siaxhoexhag-ciar kongjim, jinlui-susiorng ee toa-poxhun si boo-svia'ym ee gwgieen.   Larn tuy zheq kab kithvar ee bunji-zuliau sor-tid+tioh ee tieseg, viakoex larn sor-thviaf+laai ee.   Tegpiet si, thiusiong ee koanliam khaq-zoe tuy bunji tid+laai koq teq thoanpox.    Citciorng sor-siar ee gwgieen efnghiorng-tioh laang ee ieliam, ar ciu zhorngzo-liao hiexntai-susiorng ee hexthorng, ia zeateng-liao siaxhoe ee kuihoan.   Ti toa-poxhun ee sizun, larn tuy sor-siafzhud ee gwsuu laai jixnzhud syn-koanlaim ee sudguo ar mxsi tuy sor-thviaf ee oexym.
      Uixtioh ykefng ti Taigwbuun-tiofng sor-khaklip ee sudguo, larn aeboeq keasiok sw'iong Harnji, u nngxee ly'iuu.   Thau'cidee si, Taioaan-laang siuxtioh Hoaguo ee kaoiok, ti hit'tiongkafn toa-poxhun ee thiusiong-koanliam lorng eng Harnji laai oh+tioh, sofie bunhiexn-tiofng ee Hoaguo-Harnji-kux ho laang pie Taiguo-ym khaq-tidciab hoarn'exng-kaux lyliam.   Ar, toexji si itpvoaf ee Harnji-kux oe ho bokaang toexhngf-gw'ym ee thogciar khix ciapsiu;  phiejuu korng, "PARADISE" ee Taiguo ti Taioaan-lampo ee laang si "loghngg", mxkuo ti Gilaan-toexkhw si "loghvuii";  yn ee Harnji-kux si siokang ee.
      Harnji ee zhay'iong khiog-oe guxtioh nngxhang khurnlaan.   Toexid si, Harnji ee kaoiok ti gyn'ar ee zhopo-hagsip ee sii, su'iaux khaq-zoe ee sikafn kab khaq-toa ee lokhor.   Ar toexji si, ti cit'ee tiexnnao-hoax ee sitai+nih, y oe tuix Taioaan-laang ee hiexntaixhoax cviazox zolat.
      Tvaf, muy'cidee laang lorng zaiviar, Harnji tuix Taioaan khawguo-kux si zoadtuix boo-habgii ee;  iukii tuix hiahniq'zoe ee tvoa'imzad Taiguo khawguo-suu boo-sek'hap, ciah'ee tvoa'imzad gwsuu korseeng toa-poxhun ee khawguo-toxngsuu.   Taioaan ee Harnhagciar ui ciah'ee Taioaan gwsuu sor-thezhud ee Harnji, ofng'orng mxsi i'id ee, zef ciuxsi korng, cidee ji u cidee ysiong ee thaghoad kab iesux.    Yn ia sisioong cioh'iong bor-cidee Harnji laai, mxkuo thogciar teq thak zoanpo ee buncviw ee sii, khiog-mxzay hit'ee Harnji tioh afnnar thak koq y ee iesux si symmih.   Uxlaang thegi boeq eng Taioaan piauzurn ee 4800-Harnji-ygoa ee cvia'zheng'ee tegsuu Harnji.
      In'ui khawguo si zhoterng-kaoiok-tiofng ee Taiguo ee toa-poxhun, goarn thegi ti iuotixhngg kab siofhak ee ke-nikib, sw'iong Engguo-jixbuo.    1943-nii-ylaai sor-hoattiern, ar kimjit kiorzox Taiguo Hiexntai Pengji Hexthorng (TMSS) ee pengji-hoad si zoex-sek'hap ti cit'ee kaitvoa ee khorpurn ee bunji.    Hef mxsi tioh hunseg laixsym ee imkarm ciaq siar-oexzhud ee impiaw, sofie TMSS ee hiah'ee gwsuu si thafng tansuun "jixnbad" ar thafng kie+teq ee bunji; cviaa-chinchviu sofu ee Sehofng-gwbuun.
      Ciofng ciah'ee TMSS-gwsuu zunciaux-tioh Taioaan-oe ee bunhoad laai pailiet ee honghoad, tuy 1950-nitai-zhokii ciu iuu purn-zokciar zu Sehofng-bunge-zokphirn ee Taiguo-hoan'ek ee tongtiofng hoattiern+zhutlaai.    Cit'ee gwsuu-pailiet ee hongseg kiorzox MLT, ciuxsi Taiguo Hiexntai-Bunsuhoad.   Tegpiet ioxngsym khix zuo'ix-tioh "bunhoad", si MLT ee koankien-tiarm.   Harnji, ti ciaf si thafng sw'iong ee.    Mxkuo, uixliao bunhoad-siong ee benkhag-sexng, zerngkox-gwsuu zorzuo ee TMSS-gwsuu pie eng korpiet ee Harnji zorzuo ee Hoabuun-siafhoad khaq-siu laang hoangeeng.   Cit'ee kietkor si MLT/TMSS (eng TMSS ee MLT) iafsi kiorzox Zoaan-Latengji-hoax ee MLT.
      1980-nitai, eng tiexnnao laai zox zuxtong-hoax ee Taiguo-bunsw-zhuolie ee giefnkiux ti sutoea-ha cirnheeng;  goarn khioksi kongkhay ti 1978-nii-cien'au hoatpiao-liao "Hoarhak-korzoseg ee zuxtong-bunhoad-kaeseg" itlui ee hoarhak-giefnkiux-luxnbuun.   Ti ciah'ee giefnkiux-tongtiofng, cixn-cidpo ee Hengsek'hoax-MLT ee koanliam iuu ciaf khaihoad+zhutlaai.   Zef si sengciab-tioh Noam Chomsky Phoksu ee zarmsyn ee Hengsek'hoax-Gwbuun ee bunhoad-khaeliam laai ee.     Ti cieen-seakie-toea, cit'ee koanliam ciu hoatpiao ti Kokzex-Baxnglo(Internet)-terng, jien'au uixtioh boeq thesefng Taiguo-buun laai cviazox kokzex-siong iw'iong ee gwbuun, ciu ti kuxnii ee 11-goeh ee zoantoee-tiofng thau'cidpae ciofng khy'iong-liao Hengsek'hoax-MLT ee Kokzex-Tioxngkaix-Gwbuun ee koanliam soatbeeng koq tiefnsi.    Cit'ee syn-koanliam ee sidsy, thafng ho Taiguo-buun cviazox Tanghofng kab Sehofng-siaxhoe ee bunhoax-kauliuu ee kangkhu.
      Zu 1997-nii, Taiguo-Hiexntaixbuun-Baxngzam: http://www.edutech.org.tw ti Internet-siong khaisie hoattong.   Cit'ee ie'too si boeq hioxng kokzex-siaxhoe tiefnsi Taioaan-jinbiin u kaki ee bunji-bunhoax, ar jukym, larn thafng eng hef laai piawhien larn ee laixsym;  sor-eng ee, si chinchviu Sehofng-siaxhoe ee zoaan-Latengji-hoax ee bunji  iafsi chinchviu Jidbuun ee Ym-Haxn-Hunhap-Heeng ee bunji.   Ti ciaf sor-tiefnsi ee, si cidkhoarn ee hibang kab hiexnsit, korng, Taioaan-laang eng citkhoarn ee gwbuun-hexthorng bogii ykefng si cidee hiexntai-hoax ee kokkaf.
      Ti ciaf sor-laau ee buxntoee kantvaf si, siuxkoex tongkym ee kaoiok-thengsu, Taiwaan-bincioxng si-mxsi goaxn'ix ciapsiu citthox Taigwbuun-hexthorng khaq-viakoex it'hioxng ee bohah-sigii ee Hoabuun-hexthorng.     MLT/TMSS thafng tidciab sw'iong goaxkog ee khoky-sudguo, ar boo-su'iaux ciofng hiah'ee kaysiar-zox Hoaguo-ym ee Harnji, jien'au koq zhaa hiah'ee Harnji ee Taiguo-ym laai siafzhud ti buncviw ee laixbin.   Sofu ee khoky-sexng ee bunsw, paukoad ti taixhak sor-eng ee khohak-khorpurn, thafng iong'vi hoan'ek-zox MLT/TMSS.    Ti ciaf, eng tiexnnao ee zuxtong hoan'ek ma cviazox u-hiban.    Afnny, larn ciu thafng kab zoaan-seakaix ee siencixn-kokkaf tongpo laai hoattiern.
      Sofu ee Tiongkog-koftiern-zokphirn lorng ykefng ti Taioaan u khawguo-Hoabuun ee hoan'ek.   Tuy ciaf zaix-hoan'ek-zox MLT/TMSS, oanzoaan boo khurnlaan.    Lieen hiah'ee koflor ee Harnguo-sy ee uxnlut ma thafng eng TMSS tngzox impiaw laai zux ti Harnji-terng laai oanzoaan pofliuu.   Afnny, Taioaan ee Harnhagciar sofu ee khoarlu, ti larn zhay'iong Taiguo ee hiexntaixbuun-y'au thafng zoanpo kaykoad.    Taigwbuun ee hiexntaixhoax, ti yn kaytuu tuix "hiexntaixhoax si hoafntuix-koftiern" ee gilu  y'au ciu thafng oanseeng.    Suxsit-siong, Taioaan-laang ijieen si Taioaan-laang, ar kantvaf tuix larn ee bixlaai-hoattiern ee zolat oexthafng tuu+khix.   Taioaan-siaxhoe oe kengkoex larn ee gwbuun-hexthorng ee hiexntaixhoax laai ho cionglaai kohkhaq khaihoxng.
Ho Taioaan Iuu Gwbuun Cviazøx Hiexntaixhoax-Kokkaf                2002/2/11 thekaw NATPA