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A Further Discussion of“Speech”: The Coming into Being of“Speech”and the Diminishing of Its External Reference
Pages: 27-51
Year: Issue:  1
Journal: Nankai Journal(Philosophy,Literature and Social Science Edition) 

Keyword:  Verbal ExpressionTone"Speech"False Proposition;
Abstract: I used to claim, through an examination of ancient Chinese writings, that the tone words in classical Chinese writings are not verbal in nature. This paper will continue to develop this theory and put forward two new arguments. First, the relationship between Chinese characters and Chinese language determined that tone would be lost when Chinese verbal expressions were to be changed into written ones, and"speech"was inevitably created and introduced into ancient Chinese writings to supplement this loss. Second, this paper briefly introduces the evolution of Xu Shen’s concept of"internal meaning and external reference"in Qing Dynasty and the diminishing of external reference in the first half of the 20 th century. The conclusion is the"traditional"theory that"classical Chinese writings are authentic records of ancient oral Chinese"is a false proposition that is generated by western linguistic theory, and is not consistent with the real development of Chinese language.
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