[phpBB Debug] PHP Notice: in file [ROOT]/ext/unilang/languages/includes/lang_functions.php on line 403: Undefined property: unilang/languages/includes/lang_data::$country_names_en
[phpBB Debug] PHP Notice: in file [ROOT]/ext/unilang/languages/includes/lang_functions.php on line 403: Undefined property: unilang/languages/includes/lang_data::$country_names_en
[phpBB Debug] PHP Notice: in file [ROOT]/ext/unilang/languages/includes/lang_functions.php on line 424: Undefined property: unilang/languages/includes/lang_functions::$regionsdata
[phpBB Debug] PHP Notice: in file [ROOT]/ext/unilang/languages/includes/lang_functions.php on line 424: Trying to get property of non-object
[phpBB Debug] PHP Notice: in file [ROOT]/ext/unilang/languages/includes/lang_functions.php on line 403: Undefined property: unilang/languages/includes/lang_data::$country_names_en
[phpBB Debug] PHP Notice: in file [ROOT]/ext/unilang/languages/includes/lang_functions.php on line 403: Undefined property: unilang/languages/includes/lang_data::$country_names_en
[phpBB Debug] PHP Notice: in file [ROOT]/ext/unilang/languages/includes/lang_functions.php on line 424: Undefined property: unilang/languages/includes/lang_functions::$regionsdata
[phpBB Debug] PHP Notice: in file [ROOT]/ext/unilang/languages/includes/lang_functions.php on line 424: Trying to get property of non-object
[phpBB Debug] PHP Notice: in file [ROOT]/ext/unilang/languages/includes/lang_functions.php on line 403: Undefined property: unilang/languages/includes/lang_data::$country_names_en
[phpBB Debug] PHP Notice: in file [ROOT]/ext/unilang/languages/includes/lang_functions.php on line 403: Undefined property: unilang/languages/includes/lang_data::$country_names_en
[phpBB Debug] PHP Notice: in file [ROOT]/ext/unilang/languages/includes/lang_functions.php on line 403: Undefined property: unilang/languages/includes/lang_data::$country_names_en
[phpBB Debug] PHP Notice: in file [ROOT]/ext/unilang/languages/includes/lang_functions.php on line 403: Undefined property: unilang/languages/includes/lang_data::$country_names_en
[phpBB Debug] PHP Notice: in file [ROOT]/ext/unilang/languages/includes/lang_functions.php on line 403: Undefined property: unilang/languages/includes/lang_data::$country_names_en
[phpBB Debug] PHP Notice: in file [ROOT]/ext/unilang/languages/includes/lang_functions.php on line 424: Undefined property: unilang/languages/includes/lang_functions::$regionsdata
[phpBB Debug] PHP Notice: in file [ROOT]/ext/unilang/languages/includes/lang_functions.php on line 424: Trying to get property of non-object
[phpBB Debug] PHP Notice: in file [ROOT]/ext/unilang/languages/includes/lang_functions.php on line 403: Undefined property: unilang/languages/includes/lang_data::$country_names_en
[phpBB Debug] PHP Notice: in file [ROOT]/ext/unilang/languages/includes/lang_functions.php on line 403: Undefined property: unilang/languages/includes/lang_data::$country_names_en
[phpBB Debug] PHP Notice: in file [ROOT]/ext/unilang/languages/includes/lang_functions.php on line 424: Undefined property: unilang/languages/includes/lang_functions::$regionsdata
[phpBB Debug] PHP Notice: in file [ROOT]/ext/unilang/languages/includes/lang_functions.php on line 424: Trying to get property of non-object
[phpBB Debug] PHP Notice: in file [ROOT]/ext/unilang/languages/includes/lang_functions.php on line 403: Undefined property: unilang/languages/includes/lang_data::$country_names_en
[phpBB Debug] PHP Notice: in file [ROOT]/ext/unilang/languages/includes/lang_functions.php on line 403: Undefined property: unilang/languages/includes/lang_data::$country_names_en
[phpBB Debug] PHP Notice: in file [ROOT]/ext/unilang/languages/includes/lang_functions.php on line 424: Undefined property: unilang/languages/includes/lang_functions::$regionsdata
[phpBB Debug] PHP Notice: in file [ROOT]/ext/unilang/languages/includes/lang_functions.php on line 424: Trying to get property of non-object
[phpBB Debug] PHP Notice: in file [ROOT]/ext/unilang/languages/includes/lang_functions.php on line 403: Undefined property: unilang/languages/includes/lang_data::$country_names_en
[phpBB Debug] PHP Notice: in file [ROOT]/ext/unilang/languages/includes/lang_functions.php on line 403: Undefined property: unilang/languages/includes/lang_data::$country_names_en
[phpBB Debug] PHP Notice: in file [ROOT]/ext/unilang/languages/includes/lang_functions.php on line 424: Undefined property: unilang/languages/includes/lang_functions::$regionsdata
[phpBB Debug] PHP Notice: in file [ROOT]/ext/unilang/languages/includes/lang_functions.php on line 424: Trying to get property of non-object
[phpBB Debug] PHP Notice: in file [ROOT]/ext/unilang/languages/includes/lang_functions.php on line 403: Undefined property: unilang/languages/includes/lang_data::$country_names_en
[phpBB Debug] PHP Notice: in file [ROOT]/ext/unilang/languages/includes/lang_functions.php on line 403: Undefined property: unilang/languages/includes/lang_data::$country_names_en
[phpBB Debug] PHP Notice: in file [ROOT]/ext/unilang/languages/includes/lang_functions.php on line 403: Undefined property: unilang/languages/includes/lang_data::$country_names_en
[phpBB Debug] PHP Notice: in file [ROOT]/ext/unilang/languages/includes/lang_functions.php on line 403: Undefined property: unilang/languages/includes/lang_data::$country_names_en
[phpBB Debug] PHP Notice: in file [ROOT]/ext/unilang/languages/includes/lang_functions.php on line 424: Undefined property: unilang/languages/includes/lang_functions::$regionsdata
[phpBB Debug] PHP Notice: in file [ROOT]/ext/unilang/languages/includes/lang_functions.php on line 424: Trying to get property of non-object
[phpBB Debug] PHP Notice: in file [ROOT]/ext/unilang/languages/includes/lang_functions.php on line 403: Undefined property: unilang/languages/includes/lang_data::$country_names_en
[phpBB Debug] PHP Notice: in file [ROOT]/ext/unilang/languages/includes/lang_functions.php on line 403: Undefined property: unilang/languages/includes/lang_data::$country_names_en
[phpBB Debug] PHP Notice: in file [ROOT]/ext/unilang/languages/includes/lang_functions.php on line 424: Undefined property: unilang/languages/includes/lang_functions::$regionsdata
[phpBB Debug] PHP Notice: in file [ROOT]/ext/unilang/languages/includes/lang_functions.php on line 424: Trying to get property of non-object
[phpBB Debug] PHP Notice: in file [ROOT]/ext/unilang/languages/includes/lang_functions.php on line 403: Undefined property: unilang/languages/includes/lang_data::$country_names_en
[phpBB Debug] PHP Notice: in file [ROOT]/ext/unilang/languages/includes/lang_functions.php on line 403: Undefined property: unilang/languages/includes/lang_data::$country_names_en
[phpBB Debug] PHP Notice: in file [ROOT]/ext/unilang/languages/includes/lang_functions.php on line 403: Undefined property: unilang/languages/includes/lang_data::$country_names_en
[phpBB Debug] PHP Notice: in file [ROOT]/ext/unilang/languages/includes/lang_functions.php on line 403: Undefined property: unilang/languages/includes/lang_data::$country_names_en
[phpBB Debug] PHP Notice: in file [ROOT]/ext/unilang/languages/includes/lang_functions.php on line 403: Undefined property: unilang/languages/includes/lang_data::$country_names_en
[phpBB Debug] PHP Notice: in file [ROOT]/ext/unilang/languages/includes/lang_functions.php on line 424: Undefined property: unilang/languages/includes/lang_functions::$regionsdata
[phpBB Debug] PHP Notice: in file [ROOT]/ext/unilang/languages/includes/lang_functions.php on line 424: Trying to get property of non-object
[phpBB Debug] PHP Notice: in file [ROOT]/ext/unilang/languages/includes/lang_functions.php on line 403: Undefined property: unilang/languages/includes/lang_data::$country_names_en
[phpBB Debug] PHP Notice: in file [ROOT]/ext/unilang/languages/includes/lang_functions.php on line 403: Undefined property: unilang/languages/includes/lang_data::$country_names_en
[phpBB Debug] PHP Notice: in file [ROOT]/ext/unilang/languages/includes/lang_functions.php on line 403: Undefined property: unilang/languages/includes/lang_data::$country_names_en
[phpBB Debug] PHP Notice: in file [ROOT]/ext/unilang/languages/includes/lang_functions.php on line 424: Undefined property: unilang/languages/includes/lang_functions::$regionsdata
[phpBB Debug] PHP Notice: in file [ROOT]/ext/unilang/languages/includes/lang_functions.php on line 424: Trying to get property of non-object
[phpBB Debug] PHP Notice: in file [ROOT]/ext/unilang/languages/includes/lang_functions.php on line 403: Undefined property: unilang/languages/includes/lang_data::$country_names_en
[phpBB Debug] PHP Notice: in file [ROOT]/ext/unilang/languages/includes/lang_functions.php on line 403: Undefined property: unilang/languages/includes/lang_data::$country_names_en
[phpBB Debug] PHP Notice: in file [ROOT]/ext/unilang/languages/includes/lang_functions.php on line 424: Undefined property: unilang/languages/includes/lang_functions::$regionsdata
[phpBB Debug] PHP Notice: in file [ROOT]/ext/unilang/languages/includes/lang_functions.php on line 424: Trying to get property of non-object
[phpBB Debug] PHP Warning: in file [ROOT]/includes/functions.php on line 5312: Cannot modify header information - headers already sent by (output started at [ROOT]/includes/functions.php:3925)
[phpBB Debug] PHP Warning: in file [ROOT]/includes/functions.php on line 5312: Cannot modify header information - headers already sent by (output started at [ROOT]/includes/functions.php:3925)
[phpBB Debug] PHP Warning: in file [ROOT]/includes/functions.php on line 5312: Cannot modify header information - headers already sent by (output started at [ROOT]/includes/functions.php:3925)
Why Japanese Sucks So Hard - Page 2 - UniLang

Why Japanese Sucks So Hard

Moderator: hashi

User avatar
Karavinka
Posts: 1875
Joined: 2004-04-24, 4:00
Real Name: Yongdeok Cho
Gender: male
Country: AT Austria (Österreich)

Re: Why Japanese Sucks So Hard

Postby Karavinka » 2008-10-07, 2:48

Anatoli wrote:Interesting article.

You will find similar about Chinese and Arabic.
Chinese:
http://articles.1monthchinese.com/Why_C ... _Hard.html
Arabic:
http://www.slate.com/id/2120258/

Seriously, Japanese grammar is OK, there are many more languages with more complicated or "illogical" grammars. As for writing, it is very difficult but it has to be learned systematically. I hate the way personal names can be written but they are, well... personal, the government doesn't control much how people prefer to spell and pronounce their names, that's why Furigana is so commonplace, (you won't see that much of Hanyu Pinyin (China) or Zhuyin Fuhao (Taiwan) used). Korean and Japanese grammar are comparable but, at least, there are much more resources to learn Japanese than Korean. If you haven't seen hard grammar, try Arabic or my language - Russian. :)

The writing is getting more and more standardised and less words are written in Kanji - animals (虎 -> トラ), onomatopoeia, foreign words (煙草, 歌留多 -> タバコ, カルタ). The last Kanji were quite ridiculous. A Chinese person can tell that 煙草 means "tobacco" (烟草 yāncǎo) but wouldn't guess in the wildest dream how to pronounce it, as it is non-standard, the Kanji bear the meaning, not the pronunciation.

You must like the language (and its script) to succeed in it. Japanese is a very beautiful language, I like the songs, the sound, the politeness levels, Kanji and the way they are used. They all make Japanese unique.
As for learning to read, if you read a lot of text with Furigana, exposing yourself to Kanji, while seeing how to read, it helps a lot. Try, for example "Read Real Japanese" by Michael Emmerich.


Thanks for a serious reply for a joke article :D

In fact, I wrote this because I already had a functional reading capacity in Japanese. That is, I have a decent command of Kanji and understand most of what I read, unless it is one of those weird Kanji reading from the author cruel enough not to add furigana.

On a more serious tone, I love Japanese language precisely because of the ridiculous points I narrated above.
↑ ↑ ↓ ↓ ← → ← → B A

User avatar
Anatoli
Posts: 250
Joined: 2006-10-03, 2:22
Real Name: Anatoli Titarev
Gender: male
Location: Melbourne
Country: AU Australia (Australia)

Re: Why Japanese Sucks So Hard

Postby Anatoli » 2008-10-07, 3:45

I am not that serious either, the links I gave will explain (seems like I duplicate one of them), there's also a similar one called "I hate Kanji". I am less functional than you but I treat my studies seriously. I also like sharing the experiences, so don't consider it as criticism but I thought I needed to express myself for those who may be demotivated by your article and every joke has a bit of truth in it. :)
Анатолий أناتولي 阿纳托利 アナトーリー 아나톨리 अनातोली อานาโตลี آناتولی

User avatar
Śrāmaṇera
Posts: 4333
Joined: 2007-05-16, 14:50
Gender: male
Location: चीन, वुहान

Re: Why Japanese Sucks So Hard

Postby Śrāmaṇera » 2008-10-07, 9:39

I have "Read real Japanese" !

It´s great, though I am starting to feel weird after having listened to the stories a million times on my ipod in the bus...

I love the way the woman speaks, it´s clear and enjoyable to listen to her. It´s actually easier for me to listen to the spoken Japanese than reading the short stories in the book because I am such a slow reader of Japanese :x
खाने मुखलाई जुङ्गा ले छेक्दैन | (नेपाली उखान)

User avatar
vicza
Posts: 1276
Joined: 2005-04-25, 23:03
Gender: male
Location: Moscow
Country: RU Russia (Российская Федерация)

Re: Why Japanese Sucks So Hard

Postby vicza » 2008-10-07, 18:30

Anatoli wrote:The writing is getting more and more standardised and less words are written in Kanji - animals (虎 -> トラ), onomatopoeia, foreign words (煙草, 歌留多 -> タバコ, カルタ).

Actually, I don't think it 's a good idea. It destroys a normal logical structure of Japanese text, where word's stems are written in kanji, changing parts in kana etc. With hiragana for words, katakana for "italic" and so on (and without spaces) it becomes more confusing.
E.g., a phrase 「猫は鼠を食べる」 is more clear than 「ネコはねずみを食べる」.

The last Kanji were quite ridiculous. A Chinese person can tell that 煙草 means "tobacco" (烟草 yāncǎo) but wouldn't guess in the wildest dream how to pronounce it, as it is non-standard, the Kanji bear the meaning, not the pronunciation.

This is problem not only with foreign words. For example, 何 is read as なん/ なに, but:
如何 -- いかが
何時でも -- いつでも
何れも -- どれも

User avatar
Anatoli
Posts: 250
Joined: 2006-10-03, 2:22
Real Name: Anatoli Titarev
Gender: male
Location: Melbourne
Country: AU Australia (Australia)

Re: Why Japanese Sucks So Hard

Postby Anatoli » 2008-10-08, 0:37

I agree with the first. For some words, it's just easier to read. With the animals/plants, some simple Kanji are discontinued for consistency. You may know how to cat, mouse, tiger but not know how to write less common words for animals.

However, you may have a situation where it's harder to separate words, when they are written in Kanji. Then Hiragana is preferred.

This is problem not only with foreign words. For example, 何 is read as なん/ なに, but:
如何 -- いかが
何時でも -- いつでも
何れも -- どれも

That's why なん/ なに is usually written using Kanji 何 but other forms usually in Hiragana in modern Japanese.

--
Nolan Llyss, I find the speed of reading quite fast but I also like it.
Анатолий أناتولي 阿纳托利 アナトーリー 아나톨리 अनातोली อานาโตลี آناتولی

User avatar
Karavinka
Posts: 1875
Joined: 2004-04-24, 4:00
Real Name: Yongdeok Cho
Gender: male
Country: AT Austria (Österreich)

Re: Why Japanese Sucks So Hard

Postby Karavinka » 2008-10-08, 2:08

The example of 何 and other compounds are called 漢文読みKanbun Yomi. They mean something in Classical Chinese, and they are put in Japanese, and pronounced with the Japanese equivalents. More examples:

似非 (or 似而非) : えせ
所謂 いわゆる
何処 どこ
此処 ここ
何故 なぜ
之、是 これ (an object; "this thing")
此れ これ (demonstrative)
如何して どうして
今者 いま
如何 いかん
何為る なんする
是非 ぜひ

...and more
↑ ↑ ↓ ↓ ← → ← → B A

User avatar
Anatoli
Posts: 250
Joined: 2006-10-03, 2:22
Real Name: Anatoli Titarev
Gender: male
Location: Melbourne
Country: AU Australia (Australia)

Re: Why Japanese Sucks So Hard

Postby Anatoli » 2008-10-08, 2:24

...是非 ぜひ

You're right, Noir, only your last example is actually 音読み from Chinese 是非 shì-fēi (in modern Mandarin: 1. right and wrong; 2. quarrel). "zehi" is Sino-Japanese reading of shì-fēi.

I am glad the 漢文読み and other non-standard reading are reduced now, making learning to read Japanese more manageable.
Анатолий أناتولي 阿纳托利 アナトーリー 아나톨리 अनातोली อานาโตลี آناتولی

User avatar
Karavinka
Posts: 1875
Joined: 2004-04-24, 4:00
Real Name: Yongdeok Cho
Gender: male
Country: AT Austria (Österreich)

Re: Why Japanese Sucks So Hard

Postby Karavinka » 2008-10-08, 3:17

Anatoli wrote:
...是非 ぜひ

You're right, Noir, only your last example is actually 音読み from Chinese 是非 shì-fēi (in modern Mandarin: 1. right and wrong; 2. quarrel). "zehi" is Sino-Japanese reading of shì-fēi.

I am glad the 漢文読み and other non-standard reading are reduced now, making learning to read Japanese more manageable.


Oops, sorry ;)
↑ ↑ ↓ ↓ ← → ← → B A

User avatar
vicza
Posts: 1276
Joined: 2005-04-25, 23:03
Gender: male
Location: Moscow
Country: RU Russia (Российская Федерация)

Re: Why Japanese Sucks So Hard

Postby vicza » 2008-10-08, 13:03

Anatoli wrote:I agree with the first. For some words, it's just easier to read. With the animals/plants, some simple Kanji are discontinued for consistency. You may know how to cat, mouse, tiger but not know how to write less common words for animals.

Well, maybe. Nonetheless, when I learn a new word, I always prefer to learn it with its kanji, even if it's an obsolete one. Just because it's easier. It's easier to learn a word with some image attached to it, than a word having nothing but sound.

However, you may have a situation where it's harder to separate words, when they are written in Kanji. Then Hiragana is preferred.

Yes, but in most cases different words are separated by hiragana.

I am glad the 漢文読み and other non-standard reading are reduced now, making learning to read Japanese more manageable.

I'm not sure if this tendency (as well as changing "less common" kanji to kana) will continue, though. People nowadays use computers for writing texts. And when you use computer, it matters not, whether you write e.g. 「やがて」, or 「軈て」*. You don't have to write all these 24 strokes manually. Neither you have to worry about those, who don't know this kanji, there are a lot of online dictionaries etc.

* (in this particular case it mattered, though. My IME didn't know about this kanji. But this may be easily solved in the next version).


BTW, as you know, the 常用漢字 list is going to be expanded next year. :wink:

User avatar
Anatoli
Posts: 250
Joined: 2006-10-03, 2:22
Real Name: Anatoli Titarev
Gender: male
Location: Melbourne
Country: AU Australia (Australia)

Re: Why Japanese Sucks So Hard

Postby Anatoli » 2008-10-08, 23:25

BTW, as you know, the 常用漢字 list is going to be expanded next year. :wink:

I don't mind it being expanded (as if I have a say in it, LOL), as long as the government still regulates the usage of characters, prescribing or recommending if a Kanji should be used and more importantly, which one.

Well, maybe. Nonetheless, when I learn a new word, I always prefer to learn it with its kanji, even if it's an obsolete one. Just because it's easier. It's easier to learn a word with some image attached to it, than a word having nothing but sound.


I am annoyed with inconsistency, which could be added to Noir's list of problems of learning Japanese. For example, a word can be written in Hiragana and Kanji. Should there be a rule? Write Kanji only or Hiragana only for this word? May not be the best example and certainly not the one to cause difficulties, but おもしろい and 面白い are equally used? There are some rules about こと vs 事, みる vs 見る (+看る, 診る, 観る and 視る), which I am not so sure. I am trying to read some short stories and always wonder, why the body of the story uses simply Hiragana but dictionaries provide the Kanji version. It is easier to learn and get used to Kanji, if they are ALWAYS used, not occasionally and only in dictionaries. I am not talking about books for children but they too, differ largely from Chinese in the way Kanji are used sparingly and often with Furigana. It's good for learners but you have to always ask yourself, should I write きれい, 綺麗 or 奇麗?

The simplified Kanji are used along with the traditional. Despite the confusion in the "Sinosphere", they use simplified and traditional more consistently, for example: 国 coexists with 國, 篭 coexists with 籠, etc. If the characters were discontinued, they should not be taken out of the IME or have a switch, so people wanting to use traditional Kanji would be able to.

EDIT:
(Hopefully I am not annoying with my language comparisons (Japanese vs Chinese). They do make sense to me but don't have to make sense to others, if they are not exposed to Chinese.).
Анатолий أناتولي 阿纳托利 アナトーリー 아나톨리 अनातोली อานาโตลี آناتولی

Shinn
Posts: 49
Joined: 2005-12-23, 14:10
Gender: female

Re: Why Japanese Sucks So Hard

Postby Shinn » 2008-10-20, 8:42

I haven't been studying Japanese too long but I have to say that at first I was absolutely petrified of kanji and convinced I'd never get them.. until I actually started studying them. I realised that rather than tackle each kanji individually and mug up all the readings, I found it easier to think of them as "spellings" for each word. So every time I learnt a new word, I looked up the kanji as well. I mean, if I were a Japanese learning English I'd probably have to learn the way each word is pronounced AND written (god knows the two are miles apart. The Chaos poem, anyone?).

And my self-shrinking seems to have worked because now I'm far more comfortable with kanji than with any other part of the language (I'm more liable to sweat bricks over particles).
Now that I think about it, learning kanji isn't that much more difficult than figuring out how to properly use that god forsaken subjunctive mood in Romance languages.

User avatar
osias
Posts: 3185
Joined: 2007-09-09, 17:38
Real Name: Osias Jota
Gender: male
Location: Vitória
Country: BR Brazil (Brasil)
Contact:

Re: Why Japanese Sucks So Hard

Postby osias » 2008-10-20, 13:10

Shinn wrote:I haven't been studying Japanese too long but I have to say that at first I was absolutely petrified of kanji and convinced I'd never get them.. until I actually started studying them. I realised that rather than tackle each kanji individually and mug up all the readings, I found it easier to think of them as "spellings" for each word. So every time I learnt a new word, I looked up the kanji as well. I mean, if I were a Japanese learning English I'd probably have to learn the way each word is pronounced AND written (god knows the two are miles apart. The Chaos poem, anyone?).

And my self-shrinking seems to have worked because now I'm far more comfortable with kanji than with any other part of the language (I'm more liable to sweat bricks over particles).
Now that I think about it, learning kanji isn't that much more difficult than figuring out how to properly use that god forsaken subjunctive mood in Romance languages.
I invite you for a game titled "a pessoa abaixo de mim faria" in the Portuguese forum.
 (es):Madrid
 (ca):Barcelona
 (sv):Stockholm
 (en):Gotham City
 (pt-BR):Vitória

kid2kiddo
Posts: 12
Joined: 2008-10-27, 1:21
Real Name: Djfhfjs
Country: AE United Arab Emirates (الإمارات العربية المتحدة)

Re: Why Japanese Sucks So Hard

Postby kid2kiddo » 2008-10-29, 23:37

D
Last edited by kid2kiddo on 2011-03-25, 11:18, edited 1 time in total.

Shinn
Posts: 49
Joined: 2005-12-23, 14:10
Gender: female

Re: Why Japanese Sucks So Hard

Postby Shinn » 2008-10-30, 14:43

osias wrote:I invite you for a game titled "a pessoa abaixo de mim faria" in the Portuguese forum.


Obrigada, but I can't really speak Portuguese. All the same, this game seems to be a great idea for getting used to the subjunctive mood.

User avatar
Sarabi
Posts: 797
Joined: 2003-03-11, 0:32
Location: Cer - sau iad - nu ştiu sigur
Contact:

Re: Why Japanese Sucks So Hard

Postby Sarabi » 2008-11-17, 4:31

My Japanese professor told me it would take eight years to be able to read a newspaper. That made me not want to study anymore. Life is short. I have other interests. I'm not in love with the language or anything. Somehow, I feel like I've lost all interest in languages the way I used to have... I don't know if it's because of Japanese, or if it's because I feel I've found my calling doing other things. Could be both. I always enjoyed figuring out languages like French and Swahili, or reading aloud the newspapers without actually understanding them, but it just doesn't work with Kanji. Plus, I'm so not interested in Japan except for Japanese Buddhism, which is why I chose the language. I don't know what Japan has to do with my interests of social justice and peace, other than Buddhism... A Japanese guy told me not long ago that there's no violence in Japan. :|
L'appel m'a dit : 'Pars pour toi-même !' Comme si soi-même était une destination ; comme si j'étais moi-même ce voyage de vie, qui se prolonge de père en fils ; une chaîne infinie liée par ce fil : partir vers soi comme vers un nouveau continent, une Terre promise. Émigrer vers l'étranger que l'on devient. -Daniel Sibony[color=#8040BF]

User avatar
Karavinka
Posts: 1875
Joined: 2004-04-24, 4:00
Real Name: Yongdeok Cho
Gender: male
Country: AT Austria (Österreich)

Re: Why Japanese Sucks So Hard

Postby Karavinka » 2008-11-17, 8:42

Sarabi wrote:My Japanese professor told me it would take eight years to be able to read a newspaper. That made me not want to study anymore. Life is short. I have other interests. I'm not in love with the language or anything. Somehow, I feel like I've lost all interest in languages the way I used to have... I don't know if it's because of Japanese, or if it's because I feel I've found my calling doing other things. Could be both. I always enjoyed figuring out languages like French and Swahili, or reading aloud the newspapers without actually understanding them, but it just doesn't work with Kanji. Plus, I'm so not interested in Japan except for Japanese Buddhism, which is why I chose the language. I don't know what Japan has to do with my interests of social justice and peace, other than Buddhism... A Japanese guy told me not long ago that there's no violence in Japan. :|


I believe Kanji can be learned once your brain gets used to spelling in two dimensions. Sure, thousands of Kanji look absolutely impossible, but it's the first thousand that takes much more work to get through then the next thousand - it progressively becomes easier after a certain point. Eight years? That is nothing more than an exaggeration.

Japan, free of violence? This is bullshit. A good number of the most psychopathic/perverse murder cases in the world takes place in Japan, and they're not infrequent. The youngest murderer in the World is Japanese as well, look up "Sasebo slashing."
↑ ↑ ↓ ↓ ← → ← → B A

User avatar
Sarabi
Posts: 797
Joined: 2003-03-11, 0:32
Location: Cer - sau iad - nu ştiu sigur
Contact:

Re: Why Japanese Sucks So Hard

Postby Sarabi » 2008-11-18, 3:13

ねろさん、ありがとうございました for the encouraging words. Now that I think of it, my last few conversations with Japanese people have gone much better than initial ones, which means it's already getting easier.... although that's just the spoken language. I guess you can always find something good or something bad depending on which one you're looking for. :P

Yes, I know that was bullshit, but I don't know why he said that.... what does that say about general awareness of social issues in Japan? But I guess it's not general awareness that matters as that's superficial... the more of a niche I get into in D.C., the more real and interesting things become.
L'appel m'a dit : 'Pars pour toi-même !' Comme si soi-même était une destination ; comme si j'étais moi-même ce voyage de vie, qui se prolonge de père en fils ; une chaîne infinie liée par ce fil : partir vers soi comme vers un nouveau continent, une Terre promise. Émigrer vers l'étranger que l'on devient. -Daniel Sibony[color=#8040BF]

User avatar
Sean of the Dead
Posts: 3884
Joined: 2008-10-11, 17:51
Real Name: Sean Jorgenson
Gender: male
Location: Kent
Country: US United States (United States)

Re: Why Japanese Sucks So Hard

Postby Sean of the Dead » 2008-11-19, 4:17

When signing up for high school classes last year, at the LAST minute (I'm dead serious), I changed from Japanese to French. I don't mean to offend anyone, but Romance languages bore the hell out of me, and my school had Spanish, French, and Japanese, and you are required to do 2 years of one of those. I am SO glad I chose French over Japanese after reading this. :D
Main focuses: [flag]kw[/flag] [flag]he[/flag]
Sub focus: Plautdietsch
On my own: [flag]is[/flag]

Shinn
Posts: 49
Joined: 2005-12-23, 14:10
Gender: female

Re: Why Japanese Sucks So Hard

Postby Shinn » 2008-11-19, 7:40

I think the difficulty of Japanese is greatly exaggerated. It is a difficult language no doubt, but certainly not impossible to learn. I think much of the difficulty stems from its foreign-ness to the average learner who's spent his or her life with Indo-European languages and isn't used to the Subject-Object-Verb sentence structure or to thinking of writing as ideas as well as sounds.
As I see it, Japanese isn't too tough once you get used to it. You don't have to remember a dozen verb conjugations or tenses and there are few irregularities. Unlike Chinese, there are no tones (although there is the pitch accent, but only about 20% of Japanese words have it). Japanese sounds exactly the way it is written and the pronunciation is dead easy because the number of sounds is so less. You may not be able to guess through the vocabulary as with French or Spanish, but there are plenty of loanwords that are easy to spot. Even with kanji, the problem is their sheer number. You don't need any intuitive skill to read them, you can memorize them (which again might be a little tough but not impossible if you're willing to spend more than 5 minutes looking at them and saying "Oh I'll never be able to do this"). And you do have the kana to help you out if you don't know all the kanji yet.

The point is, Japanese is more difficult -- or different -- than the Romance languages, but that's what makes it fun to learn :)

Oh and no violence in Japan? With reference to the afore-mentioned Sasebo slashing, Japan is probably the only country in the world where an 11 year old kills a classmate and then gets turned into a cutesy sounding Internet meme like Nevada-tan. If I remember correctly, there's an anime avatar to go with the epithet too.

User avatar
Sean of the Dead
Posts: 3884
Joined: 2008-10-11, 17:51
Real Name: Sean Jorgenson
Gender: male
Location: Kent
Country: US United States (United States)

Re: Why Japanese Sucks So Hard

Postby Sean of the Dead » 2008-11-20, 1:53

Shinn wrote:Japanese sounds exactly the way it is written and the pronunciation is dead easy because the number of sounds is so less.


I've always wondered how someone could look at a Kanji symbol they've never seen before and know how it is pronounced. Anyone mind explaining it to me?
Main focuses: [flag]kw[/flag] [flag]he[/flag]
Sub focus: Plautdietsch
On my own: [flag]is[/flag]


Return to “Japanese (日本語)”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest

cron