In 1979, the Singapore government launched the Speak Mandarin Campaign to persuade all dialect speakers in Singapore to discard the use of Chinese dialects and switch to speaking Mandarin. In this study, Mandarin is the term which corresponds to Putonghua spoken in the People’s Republic of China while ‘dialect’ refers to the vernacular variety of the Chinese language spoken by various subgroups in the local Chinese community. The local Chinese community in Singapore is subdivided into various dialect groups: Hokkiens, Teochews, Cantonese, Hakkas, Hainanese, Foochows, Henghua Shanghainese, and Hockchia. However, according to the Singapore government, too many dialects spoken in Singapore would hinder communication among the Chinese. The Speak Mandarin Campaign was implemented to unite all Chinese through speaking Mandarin as a common language. This chapter explains the research background of the study. First, it states the purpose of the study. Next, it explains the research design. The chapter will also discuss the research tools adopted for the study.
KeywordsBackground Campaign Objective Chinese dialects Research Tools
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