Chinese Poems – Roger New
There is no better way to learn about Chinese culture
than to study Chinese poetry.
For the first time, Chinese poems are presented in an accessible form, with the characters, their pronunciation, and their English meaning all alongside each other, together with text in English providing insight on the poet, the cultural context and historical background for each one. English versions of all the poems are at the end of the books.
The books offer a unique approach to presentation of the poems, with the characters, their pronunciation and meaning all alongside each other, thus facilitating understanding of the poems without reference to English text.
The reader has the opportunity to come to their own conclusion as to the interpretation of the poem – in exactly the same way as an established scholar of Chinese might do.
Reading a Chinese poem is a bit like solving a riddle, and indeed, the information and clues provided are sufficient to allow even someone with no previous knowledge of Chinese to appreciate the beauty of the poems.
Poems are an important part of Chinese culture, and the ones included here are some of the best known, studied by Chinese schoolchildren from an early age. For foreign students of Chinese, these poems present a unique opportunity to get to know the culture and to strengthen their command of the language at the same time.
All of the poems here are classics, and their study provides an entry into Chinese literature far more readily than immersion in weighty novels. Each poem is short and easy to assimilate; memorising the poems, both to write and to declaim, helps to embed the characters in the mind, and to build up confidence in reading, writing and speaking the language.
The poems featured here have been chosen for the insight they provide on the history of China, the way of life of its people, and the influence of one on the other.
At the same time, the act of studying the poems embeds the characters and their deeper meaning in the mind, and aids the student in mastery of the Chinese language.
This ebook is a companion to the series. Its aim is to help students become familiar with, and memorise, any or all of the poems presented as texts in the two printed titles. Sixty five poems are provided, in the form of simplified Chinese characters alongside their pinyin pronunciations. They are in a form readily accessible on a mobile phone or tablet, so that the student can look up and work on the poems while on the go, as an aid to committing each verse to memory, with a view to writing, or declaiming out loud.
The document is intended for use in conjunction with the parent volumes.
About the Author
Roger New is an English national who has lived and worked in China. He speaks fluent Mandarin and teaches Chinese to private students. Roger introduces students to the language through Chinese poetry, which he has also found to be a good introduction to various aspects of Chinese culture.
“The poems are all simple and well-known, and are used to teach language and culture in Chinese schools to this day.”