The language with the most native speakers in Taiwan is Mandarin Chinese followed by Taiwanese Hokkien, or "Taiwanese" for short. Hokkien is a topolect of the Chinese family of languages originating in southern Fujian and is spoken by many overseas Chinese throughout Southeast Asia. Recently there has been a growing use of Taiwanese Hokkien in the broadcast media.
As the language with the most native speakers in Taiwan, Mandarin is spoken as a first, second, or third language of virtually all Taiwanese under the age of 60. Standard Chinese has been the only officially sanctioned medium of instruction in schools in Taiwan since the late 1940s.
Members of the Hakka Chinese subgroup, who are concentrated in several counties throughout Taiwan, often speak the Hakka language. The Formosan languages are the ethnic languages of the aboriginal tribes of Taiwan, comprising about 2% of the island's population. It's common for young and middle-aged Hakka and aboriginal people to speak Mandarin and Hokkien better than, or to the exclusion of, their ethnic languages.
As a result of the half century of Japanese rule, many people born before 1940 also can speak fluent Japanese.
Other articles related to "languages of taiwan, language, taiwan":
... English is a common foreign language, with some large private schools providing English instruction ... English as a school subject is also featured on Taiwan's education exams ...
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“The less sophisticated of my forbears avoided foreigners at all costs, for the very good reason that, in their circles, speaking in tongues was commonly a prelude to snake handling. The more tolerant among us regarded foreign languages as a kind of speech impediment that could be overcome by willpower.”
—Barbara Ehrenreich (b. 1941)