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Old 03-09-2012, 10:52 AM
 
255 posts, read 241,546 times
Reputation: 98
Default Any Cantonese/chinese dialect speakers in Irvine? Aliso Viejo?

I am an Irvine resident, and am Hong Kong Chinese. I am half Hakka and half Cantonese (Toisan), but I only speak standard Cantonese and Mandarin.

I notice that at Northwood High School, while there are 17% chinese (see CST results for NHS,) most of them are Taiwanese. The majority of the remainder is Mainland Chinese. Thus, only 1/6 of the Chinese there are from Cantonese-speaking families. Out of those 1/6, only 1/6 can speak fluent Cantonese. Thus, only 0.463% of the student body speaks Cantonese! That would be 9-10 people for the entire school!

Most people at NHS have never heard of Cantonese, and Cantonese is often mistaken as Vietnamese or Korean by people, including Chinese. (I am a native speaker of Cantonese, and have a Hong Kong accent, not a Vietnamese Chinese accent.)

This low ratio can be attributed to the fact that only about 25% of the Chinese at NHS can speak Chinese fluently; most of the Chinese are second generation, and for the most part, only immigrants can speak fluently. The literacy rate for Chinese stands at a whopping 20%! (That includes me, and that is a high estimate!)

I am one of those 10, and personally I only know 2 other fluent Cantonese speakers. I asked several of my classmates, selecting mostly Chinese, and all of them said they didn't know anyone who spoke Cantonese besides me. I am interested in learning Hokkien (Taiwanese), Teochew, or Shanghainese (they sound funny). Hakka perhaps, as my ancestors are Hakka.

Does anyone know where I can go to learn other Chinese dialects?
Where are the largest concentrations of dialect speakers? I wonder if there are actually more Hokkien (Taiwanese) speakers than Cantonese speakers.

Is this low Cantonese/Chinese proficiency universal in Irvine? Its high schools?

What about Aliso Viejo? Anyone there who can tell me how many Mandarin/Chinese dialect/Cantonese speakers? More Chinese than Irvine? In Irvine, the largest Asian ethnicity is Chinese; they comprise 1/3 of the Asians. Asians compose 39% of the population?
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Old 03-09-2012, 10:54 AM
 
Location: Grosse Ile Michigan and Sometimes Orange County CA
15,820 posts, read 30,869,110 times
Reputation: 11756
Quote:
Originally Posted by Haowen Wong View Post

Does anyone know where I can go to learn other Chinese dialects?

China is probably your best bet.

Irvine is a poor choice of a place to go if your goal is to learn a lot of Chinese dialects.
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Old 03-09-2012, 03:47 PM
 
Location: Duarte, CA
4,995 posts, read 4,990,568 times
Reputation: 3212
Quote:
Originally Posted by Haowen Wong View Post

Does anyone know where I can go to learn other Chinese dialects?
San Gabriel Valley
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Old 03-09-2012, 05:09 PM
 
Location: Orange County, CA
167 posts, read 552,431 times
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I know the Taiwan Center in Rosemead, CA (outside of Irvine and outside of Orange County, but in LA County) has Taiwanese (Hokkien) language classes on Saturdays. As for Teochew (Chaochow) or Shanghainese, I am not sure. Perhaps do a search on meetup.com They have all sorts of language meetups or go to a Teochew or Shanghainese restaurant and ask the people in the restaurant if they know of any language classes teaching these dialects.
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Old 03-11-2012, 09:09 PM
 
255 posts, read 241,546 times
Reputation: 98
What I was asking, really, is

Where in Orange County is it best to learn Chinese dialects? Does Aliso Viejo have more Chinese in general? Does it have more Chinese dialect speakers; speakers of Cantonese, Hokkien, etc?

I cannot imagine a place with fewer Cantonese speakers than Irvine! Only three (3) in a school of 2,000!
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Old 03-11-2012, 09:17 PM
 
Location: San Francisco, California
1,519 posts, read 2,512,474 times
Reputation: 1473
Try Little Saigon, lots of them can speak Cantonese & Vietnamese, Ive seen quite a few that are ethnic Chinese that speak both languages
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Old 03-21-2012, 09:43 AM
 
1,340 posts, read 829,663 times
Reputation: 1047
What's wrong with assimilating into mainstream American culture and just speaking English?
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