When meeting a Xi’an for the first time, often the earliest potential cultural pitfall crops up during the exchanging of names. The Xi’an language does not contain all the sounds that UEE Standard does. Similarly, UEE Standard does not cover all the sounds that the Xi’an language covers. Humans place importance on both given and family names, whereas Xi’an place importance on given names and earned titles and find inquiry after their family names to be gauche at best. This can create awkward instances of misunderstanding, even when both parties approach it with the best of intentions.
Fortunately, with a little bit of patience and effort, these issues can be diminished. Xenolinguist Britton Watkins has created a document to help speakers of UEE Standard adapt their names into the Xi’an language. The document also covers dos and don’ts of introductions, along with apt advice to follow when dealing with mispronunciation. If you’d like to know:
- How to write your own name in Xi’an
- Which name to ask for when meeting a Xi’an for the first time
- When to shorten your name
- The nuances of nicknames
- A little bit of Service Dialect
This is the document for you.
Yanlēkol — Best wishes for your studies.