How to Pronounce ‘Shang-Chi’ Because it’s Super-Important for the Marvel Universe

The “ Chi ” part is comfortable. “ Chee. ” Rhymes with “ Kree. ” Technically the “ Ch ” is not precisely the lapp as in English “ Chad ” or “ Chocolate, ” but it ’ second close adequate for conversation amongst non-fluent chinese speakers .
The “ Shang ” is said the same means as the “ Shang ” in Shanghai, the city in China. But hera ’ s the thing, if you ’ ve been saying “ Shanghai ” as if it rhymes with “ Fang Sky ” all your life, that ’ s not in truth how you say “ Shanghai. ” And that ’ s approve .

Rhymes-With-Stank-Eye is a conventional english means to say “ Shanghai, ” merely as English has many pronunciations of foreign lend words that are not correct but have become conventional, like “ Bombay, ” “ Los Feliz, ” “ karaoke. ” Some of these words have had more-correct pronunciations recently introduced into american English, some have not. The name of “ Shang-Chi, ” the Marvel superhero, is conventionally mispronounced to rhyme with “ Banksy. ” Until now.

“ My name… is Shang-Chi. ” here ’ s a new ad for Marvel Studios ’ Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings, premiering in theaters on September 3. skip to the end part for a dialogue between Shang-Chi ( Simu Liu ) and Katy ( Awkwafina ) about how to say his list .

( disclaimer : my taiwanese linguistic process skills are severe. My Mandarin is like that of a dumb child, my yue is non-existent. But I am a word swot, and I like trying to untangle linguistic “ problems. ” )
indeed let ’ s over-analyze this switch over between Katy and Shang-Chi, can we ? From an asian american cultural perspective, it is wholly plausible that Katy would not know how to say “ Shang-Chi. ” Haven ’ deoxythymidine monophosphate seen the movie so far. I assume from context clues that the Katy character is chinese american, but she may not be. If she is of chinese descent, possibly she doesn ’ thymine speak Mandarin ( many Chinese Americans, including myself, don ’ thyroxine ), or possibly she speaks a dialect that tends to drop the concluding “ -ng, ” hence the confusion .
But the questionable aspect hera is how the actors are playing the scene. To my eye, Awkwafina plays this bit like “ Shang ” is a word she ’ second never heard before. She ’ s effectively standing in for the position of non-Chinese speakers, for whom the “ a ” legal is a catchy sound to learn. She makes it sound a distribute like “ Shaun Chi, ” which is fishy in its own right .
There ’ south nothing improper or objectionable about any of that, except : in a insidious way, the view might reinforce the idea that Chinese is a prohibitively exotic speech to learn ( it isn ’ thymine ), particularly to non-Chinese-speaking observers who might see the gag and think “ wow, his name very IS difficult to say, ” ignoring the very specific and coarse asian american miscommunication scenario. This creates a license structure along the lines of “ It ’ mho okay that I think taiwanese words are impossible to say, because chinese people can ’ t say them either. ” ( And by the way, Awkwafina decidedly knows how to say “ Shang Qi. ” She ’ randomness act. )
Shang Chi AwkwafinaShang Chi Awkwafina I ’ megabyte not saying this is the purpose of the scene ( who knows if this picture is even in the final cut of the film ) but it is a possible accidental rendition. I enjoy the scenery as a relatable dialogue between two asian Americans of unlike backgrounds. But I don ’ triiodothyronine want the takeout to be “ Haha, chinese words are sooooo weird, bro, ” because that ’ s not the main thing going on here .
It ’ second worth mentioning that “ Shang ” ( and its homophones ) is a very often-used word in Mandarin. If you ’ re a Mandarin speaker, you ’ ll say “ Shang ” ( as in Shanghai ) about 50 times a day. It is not at all exotic. It is literally one of the most commonly-used words on earth .
At this orient, I would provide a YouTube television that merely demonstrates how to say “ Shang-Chi ” but, astoundingly, most of the videos that come up from a simpleton Google search are wrong, or not identical correct. AMENDED, we made our own YouTube video recording. Yet however, we ’ rhenium surviving in a misinformation long time, folks. The way Simu Liu is saying it in the clip is how billions of Mandarin speakers say it, give or take regional accents .

thus, anyways, “ Shang ” doesn ’ deoxythymidine monophosphate quite have a true rhyme in English, the “ A ” is like the A in “ swan, ” but the discussion more close rhymes with “ birdcall ” or “ bong, ” but not quite. It ’ s very not excessively exotic a vowel sound when compared to the busy vowels in french or russian. In my public opinion, the vowels in “ Liu ” are harder to get correct than the vowel in “ Shang. ” Both are highly common phonemes in Mandarin, so it ’ s deserving it to try ! The hale bespeak is to try, to be curious and open-minded, to not fall into the trap of thinking that asian cultures and languages are impossible inventions from other planets .
again, his name is Shang-Chi. In Pinyin ( the standard Romanization system for Mandarin Chinese ) : “ Shang Qi. ” In Chinese, “ 尚氣 ” or “ 尚气. ” FYI, when you see the “ Q ” in Romanized Chinese words, it ’ s like a “ Ch-. ” An “ X ” is like a “ Sh-. ” “ Zh- ” is pretty much like a “ J-. ” Just in casing it always comes up in your travels .
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now, if anyone would come forward to propose a hyper-correct pronunciation of “ T ’ Challa, ” I ’ five hundred be grateful .

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