Female cadre

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NewAmerica

Banned
Mandarin
Background: It happened in Fujian Province of China, the woman has done a good job in combating the outbreak of the novel virus and been promoted to a higher position in office.

Female cadre promoted for her courage in combating COVID-19 epidemic

Source: English sentence making practice by me.

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The question of this thread is whether the word "female" is appropriate here when it tends to be a decent and fair adjective for a woman.
 
  • Edinburgher

    Senior Member
    German/English bilingual
    No. That's the problem. We would not use that word in this context. Is this your own translation?
    Can you explain what you what it to mean?
     

    Egmont

    Senior Member
    English - U.S.
    The problem with the word "cadre" is that it is a "false friend" from French, adopted by some people, especially in China, who assume it has the same or a similar meaning in English. It doesn't. The only time I ever see it is from Chinese sources, usually official sources. One has to know what it means in the specific context of Chinese society. Knowing standard English doesn't help.
     

    Linkway

    Senior Member
    British English
    Usually, a "cadre" is a group of people and is used in some political and military contexts.

    However, Cambridge dictionary also says it can refer to a member of such a group.

    In the context of Chinese government discourse, the term "cadre" is not unusual or problematic. It's use is well-recognized and I think most educated westerners know at least roughly what it means in such contexts.
     

    Edinburgher

    Senior Member
    German/English bilingual
    Just “Female official.”
    Thank you. Then that's what you should say. And, to answer your original question, using the word "female" here is perfectly fine, assuming that you think it necessary to mention the fact, and that it is insufficient just to say "an official".
     

    Linkway

    Senior Member
    British English
    The problem with the word "cadre" is that it is a "false friend" from French, adopted by some people, especially in China, who assume it has the same or a similar meaning in English.
    Where is the evidence for this?
     

    Myridon

    Senior Member
    English - US
    Looks like The word cadre Has been stigmatized in English.
    I don't think you know what "stigma" means either. The French word has more than one meaning. "Cadre" was borrowed into English based on the French word's meaning of "frame" not from the meaning "official"
     

    NewAmerica

    Banned
    Mandarin
    Thank you. Then that's what you should say. And, to answer your original question, using the word "female" here is perfectly fine, assuming that you think it necessary to mention the fact, and that it is insufficient just to say "an official".
    Thank you. :)
     

    Linkway

    Senior Member
    British English
    I could cite hundreds of examples from reliable English language publications using the term cadre (as group or individual) in the context of political reporting and commentary on public life in the People's Republic of China.

    There are lots of examples on CNN.com, BBC.com, the Washington Post site, and numerous other authoritative sources.
     

    Hildy1

    Senior Member
    English - US and Canada
    Female cadre promoted for her courage in combating COVID-19 epidemic
    .....
    The question of this thread is whether the word "female" is appropriate here when it tends to be a decent and fair adjective for a woman.
    Whatever noun you use (cadre, official, civil servant, etc.), there is no need to use the adjective "female" in this phrase. It is clear from the word "her" that the person in question is a woman.

    Adding "female" suggests that it is somehow not normal for a woman to hold this position.
     

    kentix

    Senior Member
    English - U.S.
    It's similar in situation to comrade. We don't use that in English to describe members of society in general either. We might use it for a specific association between two people. "They were comrades in the fire retirement." We might use "cadre" in a specific, limited context, in the same way that comrade is used in a limited context.

    "Comrade" in English was closely associated with Soviet communism and cadre is associated with Chinese communism in many English speakers minds. I think it often has a negative connotation because it's associated with indoctrination.

    This is one definition for cadre which comes up in the primary result of a Google search:
    a group of activists in a communist or other revolutionary organization.

    It's a word I would expect to be pertinent to an article about China but hardly anywhere else, since it has direct associations with a specific political system.

    Am I right in thinking it's not used in Taiwan?
     

    manfy

    Senior Member
    German - Austria
    Am I right in thinking it's not used in Taiwan?
    Yes, that's very likely.

    The Cadre (chin: ganbu) System is unique to mainland China.
    Having read up on it a little, I don't think that the plain term 'official' conveys the idea properly in English. A cadre is someone that we might call a leading official or at least high official. And in the headline style that NA used, I'd probably be even more specific by using high public official - in the actual article it's fine to shorten the public official to official, though.

    See here <source>:
    The term cadre refers to a public official holding a responsible or managerial position, usually full time, in party and government.
     
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