SCBWI's Blueboard - A Message & Chat Board

Help with Cantonese?

Discussion started on

Jenn Bertman
Member
Poster Plus
  • *
  • SCBWI Member
  • SCBWI PAL
  • SCBWI Region rmc

I have a secondary character who is a 4th-generation Chinese-American living in San Francisco. I want him to greet his great-grandmother in Cantonese, but I'm having trouble finding the term that he would use for his mother's mother's mother. kwanfamilyinfo.com has "taai3 po4" listed but that's 1. for a mother's FATHER'S mother, which I could make work but wasn't what I had in mind and 2. Doesn't make sense to me in how I would use it. Would I write,

"Nei hou, taai po," James said, crossing the room to give the woman a sideways hug. "My great-grandmother," he explained to Emily.

If that's correct, I wonder if it's too much for some readers. Would he just say, "Nei hou" or is that rude to greet a great-grandmother so casually?
#1 - July 16, 2014, 11:29 AM
« Last Edit: July 16, 2014, 12:01 PM by J-Bert »
BOOK SCAVENGER, Christy Ottaviano Books/Henry Holt 
THE UNBREAKABLE CODE, April 2017
UNLOCK THE ROCK, 2018
jenniferchamblissbertman.com

Poster
  • **
  • SCBWI Member
  • SCBWI PAL
  • SCBWI Region midatlantic
Hi Jenn,


If you don't get an answer on these boards, I recommend creating a free Lang-8 account (http://lang-8.com/) and asking your question there. Lang-8 is a website where you can ask a language question or post a piece of writing in a target language and native speakers respond with answers and corrections. I haven't used it for about a year, but I used to use it all the time for corrections on written Spanish and Mandarin and it was wonderful and very easy to use. Then you can "pay it forward" by responding to a question about a language you know  :-)  (It's actually a little bit addictive.)


Hope that helps!
#2 - July 16, 2014, 01:01 PM

Members:

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.