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nǐ(你) hěn(很) yònɡ(用) ɡōnɡ(功)? : ) A linguistic story
I was washing the dishes and Jack came to me. Saying, "nǐ(你) hěn(很) yònɡ(用) ɡōnɡ(功) “.
I was so confused but when I thought over, I knew it was first language transfer. He wanted to say, "You are working so hard". He learnt it proably in a classroom setting when the teacher is saying "nǐ(你) hěn(很) yònɡ(用) ɡōnɡ(功)" for someone who "studies/ works hard." So he used it in the wrong resgister and first language transfer has generalized that the phrase "work hard" can be used in most registers.
I can't really find an equivalent to say "you are working really hard" when someons is doing the housework, but I think the closest way of native Chinese speaker would say "nǐ(你) hěn(很) qín(勤) kuɑi(快) ā(啊) [You are really diligent]" in this context. You can also say "nǐ(你) xīn(辛) kǔ(苦) lā(啦) [You have sufffered from the hard work, i.e., I appreciate that you are working so hard for this] to show your gratitude. This is also concerned with functional grammar proposed by Michael Halliday as it is concerned with how language is used in a range of social and cultural contexts.

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May 24, 2020 3:07 PM
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Language Skills
Chinese (Mandarin), English, French, German, Greek, Latin
Learning Language
English, French, German, Greek, Latin