Learn Chinese through Magazine Articles 读杂志学中文

By Ling-Ling Lisa Shih
From Ling-LingChinese.com

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Magazines articles provide a great source of intermediate-advanced or advanced level reading materials. They are the perfect resources to look for short articles with content that not only enhance your reading comprehension but also enhance your knowledge about a wide variety of topics. I have used magazine articles in my translation courses.  My students love the articles I have selected for their translation projects.  Some magazines may read like Reader Digest with a wide range of topics, while other magazines may focus on a particular theme or topics related to fashion, news events, people, family, world geography and culture, finances, business, etc.

First of all, it is important to find an article suitable to your reading level. Do not attempt to read anything without first selecting the article suitable to your interest and reading level.  I suggest that you first browse through a periodical’s content and select an article with a topic that interests you and does not appear way over your head.  Some authors write in a more conversational style than others.  For intermediate-advanced or advanced level, I suggest you look for one that is written in everyday language. If you follow my suggestions, you will find that reading magazine articles is a fun way to learn  Chinese while making yourself well-informed about the world you live in and gaining insights from other people’s experiences.

How to read a Chinese article?

To read an article, I suggest that you copy and paste the article into Purple Culture’s Vocabulary List Generator to generate a list of vocabulary and their English meaning and put the list aside.  But only refer to this generated list when you cannot figure out the new word’s meaning by its context or by the structure of the character itself.  You can use Purple Culture’s Chinese to Pinyin Converter to get the pinyin and audio recording for the text you are reading. The Pinyin will be generated on top of the text and you can click on the speaker to hear a sound recording of the text.

In short, to enhance your interest and comprehension in Chinese, the best way is to learn from multiple texts. Magazine articles will certainly fire up your enthusiasm for learning Chinese. They are nice and short; therefore, it is much easier to finish reading an article than finish reading a long novel.

For your convenience, I have begun to collect interesting and fine-written articles that are suitable for advanced- intermediate and advanced Chinese learners. They are included right after the following popular list of Chinese magazines. I will keep adding interesting and readable articles here whenever I come across them.

Popular List of Chinese Magazines (where you can get free articles to read):

Suggested List of articles to read (Suitable for Intermediate-Advanced and Advanced Reading Level:

幽默真好 刘墉 《读者》2016年第24期
准备一件晚装 亦舒  《读者》2016年第24期
专业之外 天潼  《读者》2016年第24期
太太的话一定听 蔡澜 乐读网

Intermediate Chinese-Mid

东西送人 林夕 每日一文

Intermediate High Chinese

警告逃妻 三毛 每日一文

Intermediate High Chinese

爱和信任 三毛 每日一文

Reading Assignment: Intermediate High Chinese

language tools image

Language Tools to Facilitate Your Reading:

  • Tong Wen Tang plugin for FirefoxChrome or Safari: Traditional and Simplified Chinese Converter:

For the news articles written in traditional Chinese, you can use the following plugin to convert on-line texts into the simplified Chinese. It is very easy to install to your device. Just install it and the plugin symbol will appear at the right upper corner of the screen. toggle it to convert the on-line text in traditional Chinese to the simplified.

  • Chinese-English Popup Dictionaries

After adding a pop-up dictionary on your electronic device, it will allow one’s mouse to point at any Chinese word on a web page and immediately get its definition and pinyin.



If you don’t want to hassle with downloading any plugins, you can simply paste some text into the Mandarin Spot annotation tool, and then press ‘annotate’. It will provide in-line pronunciation, pop-up English definition when you hover over the words.

For more language tools, please go to:

For news articles or broadcast, please go to Read News, Learn Chinese 看新闻学中文


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