If you read the above series of Chinese characters semantically, you would be flummoxed to understand what is going on. This is, when read phonetically, means “Hillary Diane Rodham Clinton.”
It seems that many for the 2019 Canadian federal election, many of Canada's non-Chinese politicians have given themselves Chinese language names as well. We assume they are trying to reach a larger audience. And it is not all political parties are doing it.
While it is generally easier to translate a Chinese characters into a western-style name, it is no easy task the other way around. For example Korean or Japanese names can be translated directly into Chinese characters, because they too are character-based languages. But, as this article states, Chinese has no bite-sized phonetic components with which to build foreign sounds, and no dedicated script for writing foreign words as in Japanese. To learn more about how the Chinese pick names for themselves and different way to translate western names into Chinese, read on.
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