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Hokkien - Words That Build Up Your Spirit
Hello, Welcome Here!
Reasons why people speak Hokkien with a mixture of foreign words:
1. Educational background
The Hokkien diaspora has enabled many Hokkiens to speak other languages as well. English educated Hokkiens speak Hokkien interspersed with English words. Likewise, Chinese-educated Hokkiens replaced Hokkien expressions with Mandarin.
2. Dominant language or languages
If you are a Hokkien in US, France, The Philippines, Indonesia, Myanmar, Thailand, Cambodia etc, your Hokkien vocabulary will certainly be greatly influenced by these languages - American English, French, Tagalog, Malay, Burmese, Thai, Khmer . It could even be that you can hardly speak much Hokkien any longer because you can hardly get to use it.
Since many of you speak another language, you may take shortcuts by speaking Hokkien with another language expressions. Malaysian, Singaporeans and even Indonesian can relate to Malay words being used by Hokkiens in their daily conversations. As much as you try to tell them the proper Hokkien equivalents, habits die hard.
4. Parental example
Like father like son. You parents can make or break your mother tongue. Many Hokkien parents now communicate with their children in Mandarin, English or other languages . It's good and useful to speak many languages. Yet, if such parents do not pass down Hokkien, how can their children be fluent in it? The dilemma is some parents tell their children that they are Hokkiens and yet their children can hardly speak it. Come the third generation(their grandchildren), the mother tongue dies and is replaced by another language. This problem is growing all over the world. What you sow, you reap. Will you stem the tide?