Does "boundary" mean a line or an irregular circle?

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jept

Banned
Chinese - China
The context is: "No boundary too great" (which is used as a slogan to persuade Chinese and foreign students to make friends with each other). Someone told me that the sentence means "There is not a too great boundary to be overcome." (the boundary is a line) However, it seems to me that the "too great" is an "attribute" describing what the boundary is. Specifically, I think it means there is a "circle" where Chinese/foreign students lives, and the slogan says "The boundary will not be too great if you continue making it bigger to include foreign/Chinese students" (the boundary is something like a circle). In a word, someone thinks that the slogan means "the line should be overcome (eliminated)", while I think it means "the circle should be made bigger and bigger to include more students no matter where they are from". Who is correct, regarding the meaning of the slogan? Thanks in advance!
 
  • Sharkbasket

    Member
    English - Canada
    I prefer to think of a "boundary" as a wall that separates two things.

    In this context, the "boundaries" between Chinese and international students may be language, culture, government restrictions, and maybe even literal walls between them. The slogan is saying that none of those "walls" are too big or too tall; they can make friends with anyone in the world.

    So actually, the intended meaning of the slogan is kind of the opposite of what you said. Making the boundary bigger would make it more difficult for students to cross it.

    It actually means: It doesn't matter how big the boundary is. You can always cross it!

    Think of it like: "There is no boundary that is too big to be crossed."
     
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    Hi Shark,
    Welcome to the forum. :) It's hard to guess what's behind a slogan in Chinese, presumably translated as
    No Boundary Too Great. So you might be right, and I see the distinguished RM1 agrees.

    That said,
    [Shark:] I prefer to think of a "boundary" as a wall that separates two things.
    may be your 'preference,' but it violates the plain meaning of the word.

    Oxford Advanced Learner's.

    1 a real or imagined line that marks the limits or edges of something and separates it from other things or places; a dividing line: national boundaries (British English)[...]


    The fence marks the boundary between my property and hers.[..]
    He could just see her beyond the boundary wall of the cemetery.
    ==
    Notice the first example had the object *marking* the boundary. The second shows how a wall on a boundary is talked about.
    ==

    Such considerations make me opt for the original poster's first idea. The boundary is like a perimeter of a rough circle. Making it greater, means, in effect making the radius greater and thus, likewise, the area included.


    I prefer to think of a "boundary" as a wall that separates two things.

    In this context, the "boundaries" between Chinese and international students may be language, culture, government restrictions, and maybe even literal walls between them. The slogan is saying that none of those "walls" are too big or too tall; they can make friends with anyone in the world.

    So actually, the intended meaning of the slogan is kind of the opposite of what you said. Making the boundary bigger would make it more difficult for students to cross it.

    It actually means: It doesn't matter how big the boundary is. You can always cross it!

    Think of it like: "There is no boundary that is too big to be crossed."
     
    Last edited:

    Sharkbasket

    Member
    English - Canada
    Hey benny ^^

    Yeah, I understand exactly what you mean now. I still feel like the "boundary" referred to in the slogan is something that is meant to be overcome, rather than something that should be made bigger.

    Perhaps it's a bit of a mistranslation. The word "barrier" might be more appropriate than "boundary."
     

    Sharkbasket

    Member
    English - Canada
    The boundary is like a perimeter of a rough circle. Making it greater, means, in effect making the radius greater and thus, likewise, the area included.
    A boundary can be a circle if the two ends meet, but not necessarily. As sdgraham says, the border between the US and Canada can be referred to as a "boundary", but it is not a circle.
     
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