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  1. kikuchiyo

    kikuchiyo 大阪に生まれた男
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    1. There are no spaces in Japanese.
    2. Genki is an excellent textbook. They were my intro books. At $20 or so a pop, it's worth getting 1 and 2. Though I would point out the philosophy behind those books is that you can never learn Japanese well using romaji.
    3. After being a jerk at my college, ????? sounds suspiciously like a pick up line [​IMG]
     
  2. GH0ST

    GH0ST Your Hero is a Ghost
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    Thanks ! Very nice thread it remembers me how deep we dive in culture when looking for a translation. I'm the catcher in the rice ;-)
     
  3. vincom2

    vincom2 Advanced Member
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    Historical legacy and inertia. There's nothing really magical about kanji (unless you consider ridiculously high levels of unnecessary difficulty magical)

    There's this very important principle to remember when arguing about writing japanese phonetically:
    If something can be understood spoken aloud, it can be disambiguated when written phonetically.

    I never forget hiragana, but there are moments, when I'm presented with a katakana or face the prospect of having to write one, where it takes me seconds of consideration before I can recognise / recall said katakana.

    p.s. I realise that what I have just espoused above does not seem to be the most popular of viewpoints, but if you're questioning the existence of kanji in the japanese writing system, I would recommend you visit http://pinyin.info/ Very interesting (imo) reads they have there.

    p.p.s. In no way am I advocating your not learning kanji. If you wish to learn japanese, currently at least, knowledge of kanji is essential. Learn it; just don't get caught up in the belief that it's a blessing or the greatest thing since sliced bread.
     
  4. test84

    OP test84 GBAtemp's last ninja 2.
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    thnx vincom2 for your answer, but whenever I start to learn it, I found lots of info just for one of them, different readings, different meanings, different meanings in compunds, etc.

    There is so much data just for "one" of the Kanjis.

    And since I dont know much Japanese words, Do you suggest learning Kanjis first or learn Japanese common words in Kana/Romaji?
     
  5. kikuchiyo

    kikuchiyo 大阪に生まれた男
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    I disagree strongly.

    Japanese does not parse well without using kanji. There are too many homophones. And visually it's much easier to understand a sentence when the kanji breaks it up - for someone who KNOWS the kanji they present a lot of information quickly. Not using kanji would require a lot of changes to written Japanese that frankly has no point. Finally, kanji contributes to the richness of the language. Having read many Japanese stories and novels, there are interesting ways authors use kanji to make their writing beautiful.

    Anyone with more than a basic knowledge of Japanese can see this easily.

    During the Meiji era there was talk of either moving to kana or even romaji as the standard writing system. It doesn't make sense to move to something else. Spoken Japanese has evolved with kanji. Secondly, if you have ever read Japanese poetry, or the history behind it, especially waka, there are complete poems that when read can have totally different meanings based on what kanji they were written with (sometimes authors would exploit this so poems in kana would carry totally different meanings).

    Secondly, if you know the kanji, it is easy to understand a word, even if you can't read it. ?? is a great example. If you know the two kanji that make up that word, it is easy to understand what it means. There are much more complex examples (??? is one I read about).

    If every single child in this country can learn kanji (no -S, Japanese has no plurals, except in specific cases) and if Japan has one of the highest literacy rates in the world, then there is something that makes sense with with this system. Heisig says that Japanese as is with kana and kanji, is the only logical part of the language [EDIT: Written Japanese is the only part of Japanese that makes logical sense, that is].

    People who say there should be no kanji should be advocating all latin based words should be taken out of English. Of course they don't because it doesn't make sense and the fallacy of that argument is apparent when you view it through that prism.
     
  6. vincom2

    vincom2 Advanced Member
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    Korean and vietnamese seem to have done it very well.
    There's no reason for kanji to be processed especially fast. Afaik they're very much processed like more phonetic scripts: common ones without much recourse to phonetic information, the rarer words with far heavier utilisation. The difference, of course, is that even in such a badly phonetic script as the english one, phonetic information is far easier to reference than in kanji. In reading chinese, it's like using a millenniums-out-of-date, ultra-large syllabary, and the same information can come in handy somewhat when reading kanji in onyomi. But kun'yomi? Absolutely no recourse to the phonetic component of a character is possible, which does nothing to make the script easier on the users! And you can't reasonably say that a person, upon being confronted with, say, ?, would exclaim, "Gosh! That looks so much like a river!" Sure, after the word's been explained, all the "hey it looks like running water" will come out, but it's just one of those things that seems obvious after someone's explained it and really wouldn't have been had it not been explained.
    Interesting ways? Like using arbitrary kanji and annotating with furigana so the poor reader can figure out what's going on? Interesting, maybe, but torturous. It's not worth keeping kanji just so authors can do this.

    Like I said already, if something can be said, it can be understood. Even homonyms can generally be disambiguated by context. Most people would, I believe, interpret Tanaka-san ha kontesuto ni seikôsita as "Mr Tanaka succeeded in the contest", not "Mr Tanaka had sex in the contest".

    Is this an aspersion on my level of japanese? If you read original-language japanese novels for entertainment, there's no doubt your japanese is better than mine, but that in no way disqualifies me from making observations about the unnecessary difficulty of kanji I think.

    Nobody's suggesting anything like "burn the waka". The full corpus will still be there, available for all who wish to read it. I don't see many people nowadays bemoaning the loss of commonplace latin education in schools, or the lack of old english classes. I don't see texts in those languages being destroyed either; they're available for any who wish to peruse them. It's not even as though a person competent in ????? will find it easy to understand waka without special training.

    I wouldn't call ?? a good example. ?? Cheap? Safe? Calm? Peace? Or something totally off like ??? How about things like ateji? And you can't be telling me things like ?? or ?? make a lot of sense just from the kanji put together? I'm sure lots of examples can be found both for compounds that are the sum total of their parts and those that aren't.

    Japan's literacy rate? Sure. Let's see now... http://whatjapanthinks.com/2007/07/19/kanj...ren-and-adults/
    Not many of them have much faith in their own literacy in kanji, huh?
    When you speak of the "extremely high literacy rate", I assume you mean the commonly quoted 99% figure?
    I believe that's from the same survey that gives the oft-quoted 99% figure. The US supposedly has a 99% literacy rate too. Dare you say the figure is anywhere near reliable for drawing conclusions, or that english orthography is a great system?

    Of course it doesn't make sense! I'm not advocating the removal of sinitic words from japanese. Your analogy is false.

    tl;dr
    I disagree strongly.

    This is going offtopic anyway. Maybe we should just let it rest here and resign ourselves to the fact that I'll have my view and you'll have yours?
     
  7. kikuchiyo

    kikuchiyo 大阪に生まれた男
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    'spose so [​IMG]
     
  8. test84

    OP test84 GBAtemp's last ninja 2.
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    I probably will not post new lessons duo to the fact that whenever I listen to lessons and listen again and again, They are not so clear, I have prepared two lessons for this topic but I still dont know some of the sentences since they dont talk about it and just ignore it and that doesnt satisfy me.

    for example take a look at this line:

    "Yorosiku onegai simasu", she just tells the meaning of whole sentence, not talking about its grammer or even one by one translations (she does for some but it seems that she doesnt for more advanced sentences) and I dont want to just memorize them, that will lead us nowhere.

    or another example:

    "Demo Asawa kotoriga nigayaka desuya".

    I will try these two lessons again but if they dont demystify, I'll start something else.
     
  9. kikuchiyo

    kikuchiyo 大阪に生まれた男
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    There's no good translation for よろしくお願いします or よろしくお願いいたします.

    It's like please, or please treat me well and is used in a variety of situations. I used it when meeting someone new, when getting off the phone with my 課長, or after having asked someone to do something.

    I read somewhere, way back in the day, that this one phrase is the best way to weasel your way into people's good graces.

    I don't know what you mean by the second one. Are you sure the romaji's the same as the site?
     
  10. test84

    OP test84 GBAtemp's last ninja 2.
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    you can check them out if you want (tell me so I can provide link for u), its not good enough for my needs, I dont want to memorize some sentences and she will not talk about grammer or anything as I predicate (since lessons are too short and there is no such thing even promised).

    In this week I learned Hiragana with help of Wikibooks which provided great mnemonics for them but I have problems with abour 5,6 of them but thats ok.

    And then continuing with Genki book which suits my needs better.
    I'll try to find some kind of usage over this topic and continue adding stuff but I have to think about that.

    and last but not least, Sumimasen kikuchiyo for delay on your response, Thats because I get online only once a week.
     
  11. test84

    OP test84 GBAtemp's last ninja 2.
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    there is this question about Kanjis that makes my brain buzy for some time.

    As I understood, each Kanji represents one word or a combination of words and each kanji represents some meanings, the questions is, when on some boxshots there is a difficult kanji, they help the reader by posting Kana tha shows its reading, thats ok and that shows the reading BUT the question is how you should know which meaning of that Kanji is intended? like if you know which meaning is intended, you should already know how to read that Kanji, right? (sorry for grammer errors, i cant do it anymore)
     
  12. Blebleman

    Blebleman GBAtemp Old-Timer
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    There is rarely multiple meanings per kanji. Kanji is what lets you differenciate multiple words with the same sound.
    ?(hana - flower)
    ?(hana - nose)

    So orally, if someone gives you a bouquet of "hana", you have to guess, but if it's in writing, you spot that little "flower" kanji and it makes it all clear. [​IMG]

    The hard part is not as much the reading as it is differentiating between when to use the on/kun readings of a kanji. Especially in names. Most of the time, it's pretty much a "when it sounds weird, it's wrong" thing. But when you're foreign, that rule takes time to get used to.

    But there's so much to say about kanji that makes it both easy and hard to learn. Learning the first 100 is probably the hardest.
    After that, they start making composite kanji. I love those.
    ?(ki - tree) (this is one of the first 100)
    ?(hayashi - grove)
    ?(mori - forest)
    Get it? More trees = more trees!
    So sometimes, you can understand a kanji without even knowing how it is read!

    That kind of stuff. I love grinding those weird-ass kanji games no one comments about [​IMG]
     
  13. test84

    OP test84 GBAtemp's last ninja 2.
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    wow, that was fast, thnx!
     
  14. test84

    OP test84 GBAtemp's last ninja 2.
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    that was really good stuff! thnx!!!!!

    but still I dont get it my answer, think like you dont know how you should read ? and I provide additional Kana to tell you to read it as "hana", but still how you should figure out it means "nose"? All I'm saying is that you should know both and knowing just one of them is not enough to understand the Kanji (knowing the reading AND the meaning). hope I could show what I mean.

    -Regards.
     
  15. kikuchiyo

    kikuchiyo 大阪に生まれた男
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    ? is (admittedly upper) elementary school kanji. Very rarely will you find it not written out. More so for ? which is first year elementary school kanji.

    If you find ???just written out (or you hear it) you will have to figure it out from context. If someone says
    ???????????? chances are good they mean flower and not nose [​IMG]

    More fun stuff:

    ? - bridge
    ? - chopstick
    ? - edge
    all can be read ??

    ?
    ?
    ?
    ?
    ?

    The woman radical in action. The first kanji is read ?? or ??? and means woman
    The second one is woman and child - for good or like (the goodness between mother and child)
    The third is ? sakura, cherry blossom/tree (woman underneath the tree)
    Fourth is anger - ?(oko)? My third year teacher explained it as the slave (upper right) angry (bottom ?) at the woman (upper left)
    Last is princess,??? with the woman radical on the left.



    Edit: reading your post, maybe my explanation was the opposite of what you wanted:
    You are saying I don't know the kanji ? but I am given the kanji and the reading, how should I know it's nose? Like I said it's an early kanji but given those circumstances you probably wouldn't know. You can't always tell what a kanji means just by looking at it. ? is a good example - if you already know what it means its not hard to figure out but if you don't, how could you figure out from its components, woman ? and child??? You couldn't. It's not common to be able to just look at a kanji and know what it means. Sometimes you can guess, but it's not always common (????? is a really good example). Once you learn the common radicals it becomes easier to guess??(?) for example - the first kanji is made up for person and mountain. A person living in the mountains...a hermit.

    Once you have a good understanding of kanji it IS possible to look at longer words and realize what they mean based on the kanji they are made up of. Last night one of the teachers I work with gave me this example;???. We were ordering appetizers at a Thai place and three of us were decided what to get. The two kanji for zensai are before (????, etc.) and the second character in vegetable ??. Before vegetable. Appetizer.

    Anyway, back to the point: if you could just look at a kanji and know what it meant, well, that would make life a lot easier, no? Sadly, that's not the case.
     
  16. test84

    OP test84 GBAtemp's last ninja 2.
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    Wow, having you guys long and precise answers is such invaluable to me.
    I can't thank you enough.

    on topic: @Kikuchiyo: so why they provide you with the reading? like in Japanese (JAP JAP JAP! HAR HAR HAR!) version od Zelda Phantom Hourglass or on cover of Houkago Shounen:

    [​IMG]

    so how its gonna help readers? makes remembering it easier?
     
  17. TLSpartan

    TLSpartan Kills threads
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    This thread is a constant reminder I need to install Japanese character support
     
  18. Blebleman

    Blebleman GBAtemp Old-Timer
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    Usually that's for the younger crowd, who are learning their kanji. It also helps every foreigner out there. [​IMG]

    By the way, don't worry too much about the hordes of Kanji. Because by the time you get to the part where you really start learning 300+ of them, you can use a japanese dictionnary. And then looking up kanji is really easy. (and if you're like me, you can spook Japanese natives with your knowledge of them [​IMG])
     
  19. test84

    OP test84 GBAtemp's last ninja 2.
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    so its just an aid for people to remember it, yes?
     
  20. kikuchiyo

    kikuchiyo 大阪に生まれた男
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    Sort of; even for adults, there are words that are either not commonly written with kanji or not common at all and the reading is necessary for them to know it. Check a newspaper - unusual words will have furigana.

    Looking up kanji is easy, but it's a pain in the ass when you actually want to read something. I'm around 300 kanji right now (unf.) and that's nowhere near enough to get through adult level text.
     
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