In an essay called "中國文化的理性與感性", HK blogger Lamkay wrote about the blurred line of rationality and sensation (not sure what the best word one should use to translate the word "感性", perhaps sensationality or sensuality :) ) in Chinese culture, in a care-free/"sensational" writing style which was quite "sensual" at first look. This naturally triggered a debate, as his essay itself is not, strictly speaking, written in a way that rational at all.
While I disagree with Lam Kay in quite a few issues (e.g. the non-issue (IMHO) of Queen's Pier, and the "sensual" style of writing). I think he brought out his subject (or what I thought was his subject) brilliantly in that essay and I was among the very few who jumped into his defense in this series of discussion. During the discussion I was asked to quote some examples of "Chinese culture" that sidestepped rationality because they focused too much on "sensuality". I didn't have something handy at the moment. But now there is one - Davesgonechina's cittique on Lung Ying Tai's Cambridge speech.
I hope Dave's comments on Lung Yingtai's speech could illustrate why I have been so frustrated at our education in Chinese (esp. writing) classes, and at many essays that I read in Chinese media (including those from some "prominent" self-claimed "westernized" columnist at Apple Daily today). I have a lot to agree with Lung, and I have great respect for her. I would also agree with a lot of her general conclusions, but before one reads into her logic flow and indulges into her "文采", one should probably read what Dave has to say.
Lam Kay call it the 'problem' of our culture. I would try be more precise and call it a problem in our writing style (文章, instead of 文化). My grudge is purely on such essays that try to discuss about more "serious" topics. (I totally enjoy the movie critiques from the scribbler (寫手) in Apple Daily, for example. I think he is great in writing about culture and esp. movies). Because, loose logic in such essays often lead to loose logic in one's daily life, and hence also a lot of decision making processes. To some historians this has indeed been a major hindrance in the progress of China for the past two centuries.
Maybe it is an over-generalized statement to equate 中國文章 and 中國文化. But 中國文章 is a facet of 中國文化, and how one writes directly correlates with how one thinks. I do not think one should discredit the generalized "Chinese culture", or even Chinese "writing style". I am only agaist one single element within our (generalized) "culture", or more precisely, style of writing/debate.
Lung's original in Chinese, English translation by ESWN. I think I can see and understand where Lung comes from, and agree broadly that PRC should make life easier for Taiwanese people if it wants to win them over (as the govt did to HK). I have to agree with Dave's critique on her slopiness.