Chinese is 343 languages?

burnlaur   Wed Mar 11, 2009 10:59 pm GMT

Same thing, only this time he says Chinese is not one language, but 343 separate languages.

He's basing in un mutual intelligibility. At some X distance of unintelligibility, he says it's a separate language.

Maybe it makes sense, but it seems really weird.
furrykef   Tue Mar 17, 2009 9:13 am GMT
Mutual intelligibility is a tricky thing. If we ignore the written language, then even English could be argued to be more than one language on such grounds -- there are some accents of British English that are very difficult for Americans to understand.
furrykef   Tue Mar 17, 2009 9:15 am GMT
(However, to be fair, the people who speak with such accents can probably understand Americans very easily, simply because American English is heard all over the world, so the mutual unintelligibility is still likely to be only one-way.)
f u   Sun Mar 22, 2009 10:49 pm GMT
Robert Lindsay is an idiot, who doesn't know the difference between languages and dialects