Date: Tue, 21 Apr 1998 13:28:08 -0700
From: "A. Vine"
Subject: Re: un- & -ate

Donald M. L

From: Automatic digest processor (4/21/98)
To: Recipients of ADS-L digests

ADS-L Digest - 19 Apr 1998 to 20 Apr 1998 98-04-21 00:03:08
There is one message totalling 38 lines in this issue.

Topics of the day:

1. Chinglish


Date: Mon, 20 Apr 1998 17:20:37 -0500
From: Mark Mandel
Subject: Re: Chinglish

Yongwei Gao <951208[AT SYMBOL GOES HERE]FUDAN.EDU.CN> writes:

1) Could anybody find anything unidiomatic with "Despite the Asian financial
crisis, Shanghai plans to introduce US$4
billion in contracted foreign investment this year, according to the Shanghai
Investment Working Meeting held on April 11", a sentence taken from a local
English newspaper?

IMHO, it's clumsy and rambling, but no more so than what I'd expect in any
American newspaper's financial section
trying to get everything into the lead sentence. The uses of "introduce" and
"contracted" look a *little* strange to me, but
I'm not familiar enough with American (or British) financialspeak to know if
that's just because I don't know those

Oops, hey there. That sentence was so long I fell asleep before the end. I would
not say or accept "according to the ...
Meeting". Meetings don't say things. "According to an announcement issued by the
... Meeting" would be OK by my
lights. One might argue that "Meeting" actually refers to the group of people
who met or the organization comprising them
or their groups, but that claim would be belied by the modifier "held on April
11", which can apply only to a "meeting" as
an event.

2) Has "on the cusp of" (e.g. on the cusp of the millennium) become a set

Yeah, dammit. This one seems to be used synonymously with "verge" or
"threshold", whereas a cusp belongs between
two things. You could argue that this is the cusp between two millennia, but I
still don't like it. So here's my verdict: it's
idiomatic, but it shouldn't be.

Mark A. Mandel : Senior Linguist : mark[AT SYMBOL GOES HERE]
Dragon Systems, Inc. : speech recognition : +1 617 796-0267
320 Nevada St., Newton, MA 02160, USA :
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