You know learning Mandarin is fashionable when it has become the selling point of a presidential campaign. Indeed, perhaps the most telling sign of China's prominence is the role that Jon Huntsman's Mandarin skills have played in his public persona. Huntsman's television appearances frequently include a snippet showing off his Chinese skills.
Jon Huntsman, former Utah Governor and U.S. Ambassador to China — and current Republican candidate for president — is at the center of a discussion that reveals our assumptions about language perhaps better than any other: the idea of “fluency.”
Republican presidential hopeful and former U.S. Ambassador to China Jon Huntsman spoke Mandarin on Comedy Central's Colbert Report last night, but most media outlets reported on his would-be attempt at humor.
In bold if not surprising news, last week Swedish Education Minister Jan Björklund called for Chinese language to be taught in all primary and secondary schools, which would make Sweden a leader in Europe.
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