Just checking: the following is not at all bad Chinese, or is it?


I suppose I could also write:


Either way I seem to have 'weak strength' or 'strength's weakness', which I suppose would need to be 'lack of strength' or some such.

  • Note: 研发力量 should be read together and not 力量的薄弱
    – Mou某
    Mar 10 '15 at 4:12
  • I assumed that, but that still leaves me with 'R&D strength 的 weakness' or if I rewrite 'weak R&D strength' Question, and I have no reason to think otherwise, this Chinese is normal, ok?
    – Pedroski
    Mar 10 '15 at 4:52

Both expressions (the one you quoted and the one you wrote) are perfectly fine in Chinese.

薄弱 vs 'lack of' is a typical difference between language/culture mindsets. You can replace 薄弱 with 缺乏/缺失, which also sounds natural, but implies 'completely missing' to Chinese listeners. 薄弱 is the Chinese way to say 'somewhat/partially lack of'.

  • 1
    why not enter "lack of strength" in iciba 翻译:缺乏力量 相关例句: 1.These adjectives mean lacking or showing a lack of strength.这些形容词表示缺乏力量的或显示出力量缺乏的. After which user can enter 薄弱 and examine sample sentences.
    – user6065
    Mar 10 '15 at 18:52

It depends on what the author want to emphasize. In a sentence like "XX的XX", people are likely to pay more attention on the rear part.


1) 自主研发力量的薄弱 = weakness of independent research and development competence

2) 薄弱的自主研发力量 = weak independent research and development competence

Both of them are acceptable. From a grammar point of view, (I'm a native speaker, but my Chinese grammar got rusty after I learned English) both of them are 偏正短语 (modified phrase?). 偏正短语 consists two parts, one could be considered the object (or subject? I'm not really sure what to call it here) of the phrase and the other part that modifies it. The object is the main part of the sentence which means if you remove the modifier, the sentence is still grammatically correct.

However, in many situations like this question, the modifier and the object can be converted back and forth. So it's more a speaker's choice. For example you can consider which of the two you want to emphasise. The first one emphasise 'weakness', the second one emphasise 'R&D competence'.

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