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Gung Ho in Chinese / Japanese...

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Gung Ho

Working Together
gōng hé
guai
Gung Ho Scroll

工合 is one of those Asian words that is used more in English than it is in the original Chinese.

Gung Ho was originally used to speak of Carlson's Raiders, a group of "Gung Ho" U.S. Marines who went on an island-hopping campaign of death during WWII.

A movie called Gung Ho came out in the mid-1940s and was later re-released in the 1950s depicting the 2nd Marine Raider Battalion, and brought this word to the mainstream.

It is still sometimes used today within the U.S. Marine Corps brotherhood to refer to a unit or group that works well together, or is otherwise efficient and motivated (has good moral).

In 1986, there was a movie called Gung Ho, about a Japanese company taking over an American automotive factory. They completely ignored the fact that this was a Chinese title.

It should be noted that this title actually means a condition, state, manner, or health of something in Japanese.

Language and pronunciation notes:
Like many Asian words absorbed into common use in English, this one is drastically mispronounced. The official Romanization is "gong he" but that doesn't tell you enough. The vowel sound on the first character is like the English word "own", now just add the g-sounds to the beginning and end. The second character is misleading, as you might think it is like the English word "he". In reality, the vowel sound is more like the "u" in "up".

It should also be noted, that the current generation in China no longer uses, or recognizes this as a common word or slogan.


Note: This can be pronounced and is a word in Japanese, though seldom used. Japanese will use a variation of "具合" instead. But still, not common.


The following table may be helpful for those studying Chinese or Japanese...

Title CharactersRomaji (Romanized Japanese)Various forms of Romanized Chinese
Gung Ho工合guaigōng hé / gong1 he2 / gong he / gonghekung ho / kungho


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Gung Ho Scroll
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Dictionary

Lookup Gung Ho in my Japanese & Chinese Dictionary


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When the calligrapher finishes creating your artwork, it is taken to my art mounting workshop in Beijing where a wall scroll is made by hand from a combination of silk, rice paper, and wood.
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When you select your calligraphy, you'll be taken to another page where you can choose various custom options.


A nice Chinese calligraphy wall scroll

The wall scroll that Sandy is holding in this picture is a "large size"
single-character wall scroll.
We also offer custom wall scrolls in small, medium, and an even-larger jumbo size.

A professional Chinese Calligrapher

Professional calligraphers are getting to be hard to find these days.
Instead of drawing characters by hand, the new generation in China merely type roman letters into their computer keyboards and pick the character that they want from a list that pops up.

There is some fear that true Chinese calligraphy may become a lost art in the coming years. Many art institutes in China are now promoting calligraphy programs in hopes of keeping this unique form of art alive.

Trying to learn Chinese calligrapher - a futile effort

Even with the teachings of a top-ranked calligrapher in China, my calligraphy will never be good enough to sell. I will leave that to the experts.

A high-ranked Chinese master calligrapher that I met in Zhongwei

The same calligrapher who gave me those lessons also attracted a crowd of thousands and a TV crew as he created characters over 6-feet high. He happens to be ranked as one of the top 100 calligraphers in all of China. He is also one of very few that would actually attempt such a feat.


Check out my lists of Japanese Kanji Calligraphy Wall Scrolls and Old Korean Hanja Calligraphy Wall Scrolls.

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