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Author Topic: Chinese character in Children of the Mind
runninm4n
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There are a few chinese characters at the start of each new chapter in Children of the Mind. I was wondering if anyone happened to know what they mean/translate into.
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neo-dragon
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I don't know, but if you don't get a response from someone who does, I suggest posting this in the other section of the forums which deals specifically with OSC's works. Or do a search. I suspect that this question has been asked before.
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BlackBlade
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When you say characters do you mean,

1: There are Chinese people mentioned at the beginning of each chapter and you were wondering what their names mean?

or more likely,

2: There are Chinese symbols/characters at the beginning of each chapter and you'd like to know what they mean?

I don't have a copy of the book with me, I borrowed it from the library when I first read it. If you could somehow let me see the characters, (perhaps somebody has posted those very characters online somewhere) I could perhaps translate them for you.

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rivka
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The first one (view excerpt)
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runninm4n
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http://www.amazon.com/gp/reader/0765304740/ref=sib_dp_pt/102-0967301-2851300#reader-link

this has a picture of the symbols

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runninm4n
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thanks Rivka
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martha
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Just a guess: that first one looks like it might be a translation of the chapter title, "I'm not myself." I don't know a thing about Chinese, but that character looks wider than usual, so maybe it's a compound?
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BlackBlade
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I've never seen that character written that way.

The character to the left is "dragon" and the radical on the right means, "stake" or "lance" on its own.

But I doubt OSC was trying to cleverly say, "Dragonlance."

Give me a few more minutes to see if I can find another place where the characters are meshed together.

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BlackBlade
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As far as I can tell there is no character that combines those two characters, they should probably be read seperately even if they look attached. I'll ask my father about it.

edit: I asked my genius father and he confirmed that there is no single character that uses those two parts. It has to read as, "Dragon Lance/Stake."

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Zevlag
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BB, that's the conclusion I've come to as well. I can't find it as a single character anywhere, in none of my dictionaries, it's not a single unicode character, nor in any online ancient character references.
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muumi
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That's the character on the cover of my copy of Xenocide. It is certainly intended to be read as one character (the calligraphic balance is off if it is two!) but it doesn't exist in my dictionaries either. Before looking it up in the dictionary I thought it might be a word implying the concept xenocide, i.e. dragon/alien + weapon/violence. In view of its nonexistence as a dictionary word, it probably is supposed to be a word meaning xenocide, but not one from our own time and history.

Of course, we still can't pronounce it.

And if I was going to invent that character, I would put the radical ge (weapon) on the bottom. The radical long (dragon) is too wide to accept another beside it.

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Flaming Toad on a Stick
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Welcome to Hatrack, muumi!
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runninm4n
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so it could possibly mean Xenocide in its own way? Or would it literally translate into Dragonstake, or Dragonlance, or even Dragon Weapon, or Alien Violence?
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FlyingCow
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That's the way I would probably interpret it, run.

"Dragon" could be a way of saying "alien creature" or "unknown foreign threat"... which could be a rough translation of "Xeno".

"Lance/Stake" could be a way of saying "slayer" or "killer" or "thing that causes death"... which could be a rough translation of "-cide".

BlackBlade, if someone asked you to write the word for "Alien-slayer" in Chinese characters... could "Dragon-stake" maybe fit the bill?

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BlackBlade
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I almost certainly would NOT use dragon to symbolize aliens.

The Chinese people have for quite sometime (well to be more accurate for about 40 years) referred to themselves as "Children of the Dragon." I can't think of any time they have referred to foreigners as dragons. But I'll look into it, I can certainly be wrong.

After looking into it alittle, I could see the buggers perhaps being referenced as dragons as they look dragonish I suppose, more so then say Jabba the Hut. But it just seems that Chinese people use the symbol of the dragon to reference themselves or powerful people. But as the novel is set many many years into the future you can certainly take some liberties with the language.

Perhaps the character is meant to reference the using of Chinese people as weapons, as they have the society of Path where Anton's key has been turned but instead of size they have used OCD and the propaganda of Chinese culture to keep the geniuses in check.

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mr_porteiro_head
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Anton's Key has not been turned on the people of Path -- it's a completely different genetic key.

You can't turn Anton's key without the side-effect of size, because that's how Anton's key works.

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BlackBlade
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quote:
Originally posted by mr_porteiro_head:
Anton's Key has not been turned on the people of Path -- it's a completely different genetic key.

You can't turn Anton's key without the side-effect of size, because that's how Anton's key works.

I understand that, but as Xenocide takes place MANY years after the Shadow Series, perhaps a remedy for gigantism has been uncovered.

Perhaps Mr. Card will address that possibility when he joins the two verses.

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rivka
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I was under the impression that OSC had already clarified that the people of Path do NOT have Anton's key turned, but have their intelligence for other genetic reasons entirely.
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BlackBlade
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quote:
Originally posted by rivka:
I was under the impression that OSC had already clarified that the people of Path do NOT have Anton's key turned, but have their intelligence for other genetic reasons entirely.

I've never heard him address that situation. You could easily know something I do not.
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rivka
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There are at least a dozen (maybe double that) threads on this issue over on the other side. Without rehashing all issues brought up in each of those:
There is no reason to assume the people of Path have Anton's Key turned, and many reasons to assume that they do not. There are several different genes which affect human intelligence. Why would the Pathites have the same one as Bean? And what makes you think it is possible to separate that effect from the growth effect? Especially since there is plentiful evidence that the growth is a necessary complement to Bean's neural development? Without the increased cranial growth, his brain would have become too large for his skull, which would have some pretty awful ramifications.

Also, I could swear OSC had definitely stated they were not related, but if it was on the Other Side, I'm using the wrong keywords for my search. Or it fell off the board.

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BlueWizard
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Rivka-
"And what makes you think it is possible to separate that (intelligence) effect from the growth effect?"

How about 3,000 years of scientific evolution?

Look at the change in the world in the 100 years of the 20th century. You don't think this minor problem could be solved in 3,000 years? Three thousand years is an immensely long time with respect to the advancement of science.

Look back 3,000 years from today, and in 1,000 B.C. mankind was virtually savages. Now take that contrast and move 3,000 years into our future. Many things, virtually anything, is possible.

Just a thought.

Steve/BlueWizard

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rivka
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You are ignoring the fact that the two effects do not happen to be connected; they are irrevocably interwoven. And "minor problem"????!

Given the many other ways intelligence can be genetically enhanced, it seems far more likely any scientist working on the problem would select one of them instead. Ignoring such things as diminishing returns, and your (groundless) assumptions about the science of thousands of years in the future.

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scifibum
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Wait, you're arguing about whether or not it's possible for a fictional genetic trigger to be responsible for other fictional genetically enhanced intelligence? Discussing/speculating about the author's intent, I can see, but about the science? It's made up, people. Could be either way in his mind...but don't count on OSC to have thought this question through. He's not big on the science details.
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mr_porteiro_head
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quote:
Also, I could swear OSC had definitely stated they were not related, but if it was on the Other Side, I'm using the wrong keywords for my search. Or it fell off the board.
He has.
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ying-sun
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quote:
Originally posted by BlackBlade:
The character to the left is "dragon" and the radical on the right means, "stake" or "lance" on its own.

But I doubt OSC was trying to cleverly say, "Dragonlance."

could it be a way of writing "dragon army"? it would be a bizarre, seemingly out-of-place callback to ender's game. just trying to come up with something! [Smile]
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Heisenberg
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When I first saw the thread title I thought it was going to be about Qing-jao. She still stands as one of the most depressing characters that I have ever read.
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Elison R. Salazar
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quote:
Originally posted by runninm4n:
http://www.amazon.com/gp/reader/0765304740/ref=sib_dp_pt/102-0967301-2851300#reader-link

this has a picture of the symbols

*Logograms.
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JanitorBlade
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quote:
Originally posted by ying-sun:
quote:
Originally posted by BlackBlade:
The character to the left is "dragon" and the radical on the right means, "stake" or "lance" on its own.

But I doubt OSC was trying to cleverly say, "Dragonlance."

could it be a way of writing "dragon army"? it would be a bizarre, seemingly out-of-place callback to ender's game. just trying to come up with something! [Smile]
I mean, at that point you are basically speaking in code/euphemism. The book takes places thousands of years in the future, so you can essentially say characters mean whatever you want them too. They evolved!

Not sure why Dragon Army would be at the beginning of a chapter for that book however. There's very little that connects the events of Ender's Game with Children of the Mind.

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