Thursday, November 22, 2007

A Concise Chinese English Dictionary for Lovers - Xiaolu Guo

This is an interesting book to read at around the same time as seeing the film The Missing Star (an Italian film set in China). The book is narrated by a young Chinese woman who has moved to the UK to study and it outlines her perceptions of British culture from the viewpoint of someone coming from a very different cultural background. She makes some very interesting observations about what the English language say about Western lifestyles and attitudes to time and relationships. Her evident confusion in the face of the peculiarities of the English language make the reader both laugh and think more deeply about language.

The book is entertaining too though sometimes seems a bit contrived and the deliberately bad English can sometimes become irritating.

Xiaolu Guo is also a film director, her film How is Your Fish Today was one of the highlights for me of the 2006 Edinburgh International Film Festival.

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