A Dictionary of Cantonese Slang: The Language of Hong Kong Movies, Street Gangs and City Life

$38.00 SGD

By Kingsley Bolton and Christopher Hutton

This unconventional and colourful dictionary locates the discussion of its subject, Cantonese slang, within the social, cultural and political dynamics of Hong Kong society. 'Slang' refers to a wide range of Hong Kong vernacular Cantonese speech styles, notably the language of the underworld of teenagers, and of Hong Kong movies and comics.

The book opens with a general introduction to the history of the 'vernacular' and 'vulgar' dictionaries, including the lexicography of Cantonese; the socio-political and linguistic background to Hong Kong; and the specific problems of approach and methodology faced by the linguist as urban anthropologist in researching such issues. Concise definitions and examples of usage are provided where appropriate, and a character list enables readers unfamiliar with Chinese transcription systems to use the text.

Christopher Hutton studied linguistics at the University of Oxford and Columbia University in New York. He has taught Yiddish Studies at the University of Texas at Austin and general and English linguistics in Hong Kong.  

Kingsley Bolton taught for two decades at the University of Hong Kong, before becoming Professor of Linguistics in the English Department at the University of Stockholm.

Publication Year: 2008
516 pages, 229mm x 152mm
ISBN: 978-9971-69-324-4, Paperback

NUS Press & C. Hurst & Company