Zulu <South African> Choir Song

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Michelle Green

Senior Member
Chinese
Hi all,
How do you understand the phrase "Zulu Choir Song"?
1. The singers in the choir are Zulu people.
2. The song is in Zulu language.

And how about "South African Choir Song"?
1. The singers in the choir are South Africans.
2. The song is directed at South Africans, but the singers don"t have to be South Africans.

I'm so confused about this. I don't know whether "Zulu" and "South African" modify the word "choir" or the word "song." :confused::confused::confused:
Could you help me with this? Thank you in advance.
 
  • AnythingGoes

    Senior Member
    English - USA (Midwest/Appalachia)
    Where did you see these phrases? Please provide several sentences of context.
     

    natkretep

    Moderato con anima (English Only)
    English (Singapore/UK), basic Chinese
    It is ambiguous, and if you want it clarified you might need to phrase it differently. Even without 'choir', to complicate matters, a Zulu song could mean 'a song in the Zulu language' or 'a song from the Zulu tradition - which can be sung in English'. And if you add 'choir', you'll need to decide whether Zulu modifies 'choir' or 'song'.
     

    Michelle Green

    Senior Member
    Chinese
    It is ambiguous, and if you want it clarified you might need to phrase it differently. Even without 'choir', to complicate matters, a Zulu song could mean 'a song in the Zulu language' or 'a song from the Zulu tradition - which can be sung in English'.
    Thanks a lot. Yeah, it is better to phrase it differently.
    And if you add 'choir', you'll need to decide whether Zulu modifies 'choir' or 'song'.
    I'm not very clear on this. If I add "choir," people would understand the phrase in two ways? Some would think "Zulu" modifies "Choir," and some would think it modifies "song"?
     

    Michelle Green

    Senior Member
    Chinese
    Yes.
    This could be a Choir Song that is Zulu.
    This could be a Song, sung by a Zulu Choir.
    Sorry, I have another question. How about the phrase "South African Choir Song"? It might be a little different from "Zulu Choir Song." Would people also understand it in two different ways?
     

    natkretep

    Moderato con anima (English Only)
    English (Singapore/UK), basic Chinese
    It's ambiguous also as to whether it's the choir or the song that's South African. However, if it's the former, we might be more likely to write 'Song by a South African choir'. If it's the latter, we might write 'South African song (choral)'.
     

    Michelle Green

    Senior Member
    Chinese
    It's ambiguous also as to whether it's the choir or the song that's South African. However, if it's the former, we might be more likely to write 'Song by a South African choir'. If it's the latter, we might write 'South African song (choral)'.
    Many thanks for your suggestion. It is much better than the original one. :):):)
     
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