Friday, December 16, 2011

Harry Potter in Hanyu?

So at the same time I bought those Tintin books, I also thought I might put some of my birthday money towards the same thing I ALWAYS put birthday money towards - new books. The only trouble is that right now I'm in a smallish city in China that doesn't stock a lot of English language titles.

The solution?



Well, you know what I mean. Sometimes I just get too excited about stuff like this. On Monday I finally fulfilled the long-term goal of acquiring the entire series of Harry Potter in hanyu (written Mandarin). I have been thinking for a long time about how to maintain my Chinese proficiency once I get back to the sunny Australian skies, and I know myself too well to think that I would just pickup a textbook for the sake of it. There had to be something that would actually keep my interest. Something relatively simple. Something I was already familiar with.

It's the perfect solution, really. I intend to make myself a little glossary of all the proper nouns and I can't wait to see what the government wouldn't allow in their version of the saga.

It's also kind of customary for someone in my generation (Y) to own the Harry Potter books in any/all of the languages they are proficient in. That's just a thing. It really is. It's a rule.
In other news, I just started googling for any potentially already-made glossaries for English speakers reading the Chinese Harry Potter books, and found all kinds of interesting related and unrelated articles. Take a look at these if you're interested in this kind of thing:

The Chinese government's role in censoring films and film releases in China is apparently seriously prolific. They also recently released "The Beginning of the Great Revival" which is essentially a modern-made propaganda film all about the rise of the communist party. The government limits wholly foreign-made films to approximately 20 titles per year which is about the same number as domestically produced films released annually, and they are quite careful about the ones they chooses to allow in at all. I mean, they're pretty infamous for taking a hard-line policy against anything which promotes time travel... The New York Times article on all of this also acknowledges that such government intervention is essentially futile because of the crazy high levels of illegal movie and TV-show pirating in China. There is pretty much no such thing as intellectual property in this country, and there aren't really any laws at all regarding downloading and file-sharing. Any citizen who wants to see the internationally-released-films-that-the-government-doesn't-like still can and will.

Here is a list of HILARIOUS fake Harry Potter books that have been found published in China. Follow this link to see the ridiculous titles and covers alone. Like "Harry Potter and Beaker and Burn" - the cover of which features one of the animated ants from A Bug's Life. It's all so so so very funny.

And this page has a few of the Chinese characters I'll need to read the seven books. Including the translation of "Veela". Hahahahaha. Something tells me this whole thing is going to take a long, long time.

1 comment:

  1. Just so you know, you are probably the coolest person ever. I can't believe I never thought about getting the Harry Potter series when I was over there....but I know what's on my list after I get done with the book I'm reading right now!


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