Re: "genre" in Chinese

Does anyone know how to say “genre” in Chinese, as in “literary genre”? I’m looking for the specialized term (which I forgot … grrr) and not a generic term like “classification” or “category”. Thanks!

Not 100% sure, but I vaguely remember wen2 ti3 (

Incubus is right. I just asked a colleague.

Ti3Tsai2 denotes various text types: poetry, stories, emails, jokes, etc.

But wenti is more like narrative, informative, descriptive, expository.

I think I found a better term, at least one that fits more into the context I’m using (

[quote=“LittleBuddhaTW”]I think I found a better term, at least one that fits more into the context I’m using (

Good points, P. I have to give an oral report (in Chinese) on an article (in English) for my class on Tao Yuanming’s poetry as a form of autobiography. I think the issue of whether or not the term “genre” is appropriate for what Tao Yuanming revolutionized would be a good topic for discussion with my classmates and professor … I think it’s probably a more complicated issue than simple translation.

Translation always is, that’s what makes it such a fascinating occupation.

I would have thought that if you are that far into Chinese you would be thinking in Chinese and ask someone in Chinese for help - thereby avoiding the problem of translation.

Do you even know what you’re talking about or are you just trying to be a prick?

I think wen2ti3 is the accepted academic translation. There is a fairly well-known book called “Zhongguo gudai wenti xue” on this topic.

Do you even know what you’re talking about or are you just trying to be a prick?[/quote]

I’d say prick. And jealous. And apparently not really sure how “thinking in Chinese” actually works or what it feels like. I almost feel like starting a new topic about thinking in Chinese to explain to Riain why it wouldn’t work to just “ask somebody in Chinese” but I’m suddenly exhausted. :unamused:

Well, based on the overall context of the original article (in English), my take on it is that the author’s meaning of “genre” in English would not work with “wen-2 ti-3”, therefore I’m going to stick with “shi-1 feng-1” (which I think is the point he was trying to make). The point is that I have to basically translate this article into Chinese for my classmates whose English level is very low, and since I’m the token “laowai” in my classes, I’m responsible for leading all of the discussions on the English source material. My oral report is tomorrow, so we’ll see how it goes, and I’ll definitely discuss the “genre” issue with my professor (she taught for 10 years at Harvard, so she knows what she’s talking about). I’ll post back tomorrow evening on how it goes …

And Scooter you’re right, give a guy a little knowledge in Chinese and they suddenly think they’re the world’s authority on the subject. I’ve been studying for nearly 6 years now, am working on my M.A. in Chinese lit. and I still consider myself a beginner in many respects. There are a lot of folks here who are real experts (like Ironlady, who I adore! :smiley: )

After giving my presentation in class, the professor said that based on the context, 詩風 is more appropriate. It is highly debateable whether Tao Yuanming actually started off an entirely new 文體.

Scooter and Little Buhhda - I apoligise - I miss that it was a translation issue. I do not speak a lot of Chinese - but what I do know - I think in Chinese.

It took a long time and a lot of help from a special lady