Shanghai Daily,Feb.11,2009 on page A6:
There are some Shanghainese who look down on folks speaking a different dialect,especially one from a poorer region. These Shanghainese strut about chattering away conspicuously in Shanghai dialect to the befuddlement of whoever cannot speak it. Some Shanghainese even call anyone from a poorer place axiang or xiang'u'nin, derogatory terms similar to bumpkin,(literaly,coming from villages.) But not all Shanghainese are vain. Most are warm hearted as I do. I am a native of Shanghai since 1926 as an octogenarian now.
An article in a local paper says speaking Shanghai dialect in public is bad manners. What do you think? A native of Anhui said: "It is natural and reasonable. People have the right to speak their own language. Do in Rome as the Romans do." A teacher said:"Shanghai dialect is one of Shanghai's features. But it would be better for people to speask Mandarin on formal occasions." For details,read "A Glimpse of the Chinese Language" dedicated for such understanding. www.rand.org for information.
Francis Shieh,a native of Shanghai but I taught Mandarin and Wu dialect(Shanghai dialect mainly)in different US universities and institutions. I am a faculty at www.dictyon.net in Maryland,USA. Visit www.Google.com and search Francis Shieh.
Francis Shieh a.k.a. Xie Shihao or Zia in Shanghai dialect for my family name on February 11,2009 in Shanghai, China at 7.06 p.m.