"They are eating rice."


November 18, 2017

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I think the English version for it should be 'they are eating'. Because, in Chinese 'fan' is a very general concept, which contains almost everything edible, whereas 'mifan' is the one equivalent to 'rice'. In that sense, the translation is a little bit off.


Duolingo thinks 吃饭 means “eat rice” everywhere and it’s pretty annoying


Ta men chi fan should work as well. I have been taking Chinese for 5 years and know a quite a lot


i think they want us to use 在 to emphasize that the action is happening now, as in it's in progress - "they ARE EATING rice", rather than "they eat rice".


Well the reason is because, when people say, "Ta men chi fan," It translates more as, "They are eating food," or "They eat." In the same sense, "chi fan le ma?" Translates to, "Have you eaten?" It's an old cultural language point because Chinese ate mostly rice back in the day. Other foods were present, but 90% or more was rice. The phrase just stayed around. If you say, Ta men zai chi fan, we know 100% that they are doing the action of eating rice.


在 (zai) is -ing here. 吃饭(chi fan) means eat. 吃米饭 (chi mifan) would be eat rice if you want to know 100% they are eating rice..


That is totally beside the point! `zai' pertains to the ongoing-ness of the action. 'chi fan' may mean eating rice or just eating.


Wouldn't 他们吃饭 just mean "they eat"?


If you really want to emphasize the action they are doing right at the moment, one could say 他们正在吃饭。Alternatively, one can use context clues like 现在


他们在吃米饭 should have been accepted. 米饭 is cooked rice whereas 饭 is just rice


The more im doing duolingo the less chinese I understand


Why is this in the hobbies lesson?


They are eating.... where is the word rice?


饭 is word for meal, and culturally, all Chinese meals consisted of mainly rice. Honestly, if Duo cared about the content of the meal, they ought to have at least given the full phrase 米饭 Other 饭 words: 午饭 (wǔfàn; lunch),饭碗 (fànwǎn; rice bowl also figure of speech about livelihood),饭局 (fànjú; dinner party)


Ummm.... 饭 is the word for "rice" while 餐 is the word for "meal", ergo 午餐 is lunch... etc. Somehow things have evolved differently on Mainland China...


Shouldn't "They are eating rice." be 他们正在吃米饭。


can this mean both "they are eating" and "they are eating rice?" If so, how would we differentiate between the two?


My wife told me it should be:他们在吃米饭


I put 他们在吃饭呢 (the 'ne' emphasizes that they are currently in the middle of the action), but it was marked wrong.

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