Articles on David Cameron’s Visit to Peking University
(www.jyb.cn’s version against www.guardian.co.uk’s version)
This short essay will discuss the similarities and differences between two articles about David Cameron’s visit to Peking University; one in English by “the guardian”, the other in Chinese from www.jyb.cn (JYB). Many areas will be compared and contrasted, including the contents of the articles, layout, and so on.
To begin with, take a look at the general layout, how the contents of the articles are presented. Both articles start with a heading which are printed in bold writing (the bolded text makes the headings stand out from the rest of the article, making it easier to spot them); this gives the reader some idea on what issues or stories the articles may concern. However, only the English version further includes a sub-heading, which allows the reader to know slightly more on what the text may be about. After the headings, both articles provide some referencing information: the name of authors, the publication body, and publication date. Though, the Guardian provides more precise publication details compared to JYB in that it even provides the time of the publication. Both versions have placed a picture near the start of the articles, along with captions. It is believed that having a photo helps to make the article seem more interesting, because it is much more visually obvious than just blocks of text, which would stimulate the reader to continue reading. So in a way, it has the effect of attracting the reader’s attention, hence probably why both versions have decided to put the image near the beginning. Both the Chinese and English prints have divided their main text into many paragraphs; 7 for the Chinese and 11 for the English. There exists a great variety in the length of each paragraph in the two articles; some paragraphs are composed of only one or two sentence, whereas others are lengthier, for example with 7 sentences.
Now, moving on to the actual content of the articles, it can be found that as the headings suggests, Guardian focuses more on the educational side of the visit and issues concerning the raising tuition fees; on the other hand, JYB emphasises more on the economical side of the situation. Right from the very first paragraph, the Guardian mentions Cameron’s “plans to raise tuition fees.” As for JYB’s commencing paragraph, it raises the views of the British prime minister, that “the rise of China is a kind of opportunity for the development of other countries, and not a threat” which is notably rather economics-related. After the opening paragraph, both articles move on to the introduction of David Cameron himself, stating information such as him being the “youngest prime minister since Lord Liverpool” and “since 1812.” Although both second paragraphs are about David Cameron, the emphasis of the two texts is different; this is via the way the information is expressed. The Guardian stresses more about the Chinese students’ fascination towards Cameron; this effect is created by the choice of words such as “emblazoned” and “rapt” when describing the situation. JYB does not even mention one word about the Chinese students in this paragraph; it simply states the information very factually, and then describes the visit as being an “important stop.” In their third paragraphs, the two articles again touch on the same subject. They both comment on Cameron’s attempt on saying “qi lai qi lai”, a line from the Chinese national anthem. However, the difference between the two lies mainly in the response after his attempt. JYB writes very positively, that Cameron’s opening “won applause from the students”. Rather conversely, Guardian does not mention the applause for Cameron but instead, states he admitted with an embarrassed-laughter his Chinese was insufficient and that “he had a little more learning to do.”
The British article had a shorter cover in terms of