A Sinophile is a non-Chinese person who demonstrates a strong interest in aspects of Chinese culture or who shows a specific interest in the Greater China region. It is also commonly used to describe those knowledgeable of Chinese history and culture (such as scholars and students), non-native Chinese language speakers, pro-Chinese politicians, and people perceived as having an obsessive interest in any of the above.
Typical interests of Sinophiles
- Chinese languages (typically Mandarin or Cantonese)
- Martial Arts, such as variants of Kung fu
- Chinese calligraphy and art
- Chinese horoscopes
- Ancient art of feng shui - Daoism
- Zen Buddhism
- Traditional cultural Chinese clothing Hanfu and modern cultural Chinese clothing Qipao
- On occasion, Sinophiles can also denote a sexual preference for Chinese or Asian partners. The term can be used to describe men or women but is more frequently used to describe men (particularly Caucasian men) occasionally being used as a synonym for those displaying a real or perceived Asian fetish. The term is not inherently offensive as "yellow fever."
- Chinese tea culture
- Pearl S. Buck (賽珍珠 or 赛珍珠), who wrote many novels about China.
- Anson Burlingame, ex-U.S. Congressman, who was appointed in 1861 to be the United States minister in China. He was an unabashed Sinophile, who was a voice of conciliation and moderation within the Western diplomatic community.
- Joseph Needham (李約瑟), a British biochemist best known for his works on the history of Chinese science; learned Classical Chinese
- Matthew Pankhurst, a world renowned English scholar infamous for his studies of the Chinese language, cullture, and woman.
- David Wilson, Baron Wilson of Tillyorn ((魏德巍 /衛奕信), British diplomat and former Governor of Hong Kong; learned Chinese
- Robert Morrison (馬禮遜 or 马礼逊), Scottish missionary; fluent in Chinese (likely Cantonese)
- Sir Cecil Clementi (金文泰), British colonial administrator and former Governor of Hong Kong; fluent in Cantonese and Pekingnese
- Sir John Francis Davis (戴維斯 or 爹核士), Sinologist, diplomat and former Governor of Hong Kong
- Sir Edward Youde (尤德), diplomat, Sinologist and former Governor of Hong Kong; fluent in Mandarin
- Sir David Akers-Jones (鍾逸傑爵士), former administrator of Hong Kong and advisor to the Chinese government