Volume 12, Issue 1
  • ISSN 0817-9514
  • E-ISSN: 2542-5102
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The teaching of Mandarin Chinese can be enhanced by the application of principles underlying the Chinese way of thinking -the Conceptual Sequence Principle (CSP) (Wu 1992:53) and the Principle of Temporal Sequence (PTS) (Tai 1985:61). These are fundamental principles motivating syntactic structures and discourse organisations in Chinese. The two principles capture the most general tendency of Chinese syntactic structures and discourse organisation. CSP accounts for various double (or multiple) nominative constructions typical of the language including Subject-Object-Verb (SOV) and Object-Subject-Verb (OSV) patterns, whereas PTS explains the relative position of verbs in verb compounds and serial verb constructions, and the position of adverbials – typically those of time and location – in relation to the verb in a sentence, as well as the because-therefore discourse pattern (Kirkpatrick 1991:183). An understanding of the two principles will not only enable students to gain insight into the Chinese language and avoid common mistakes caused by the interference of their mother tongue, but also assist them to understand the Chinese way of thinking and achieve interactive competence in the language.


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  • Article Type: Research Article
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