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Three decades ago, finding opportunities to learn the Cantonese language in San Francisco wasn’t hard. But today in the city that’s drawn Cantonese speakers from South China for over 150 years, there is fear that political and social upheaval are gradually diminishing the language. The Chinese government’s push for wider use of Mandarin, which is already the national language, along with the country’s changing migration patterns have contributed to an undeniable shift away from Cantonese. It’s a change that has reverberated from East to West. From the U.S. to the U.K. and beyond, there is worry that Cantonese won't survive in some families for another generation.

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