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Japanese Names

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Japanese Names

Postby somethinorwatever » Mon 04.18.2005 11:44 pm

How are names written in japanese. Are the names of Japanese origin (like suzuki and yoshi) written in katakana like american names? Are there special Kanji specifically for japanese origin names?
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RE: Japanese Names

Postby Matsumoto_hideto » Mon 04.18.2005 11:51 pm

american names are mostly written in katakana


unless u want to be "cool" and translate the meaning of ur name into kanji.........


japanese names mainly involve kanji!

but on occasion you get a hiragana nickname

or some famous ppl use katakana nicknames
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RE: Japanese Names

Postby somethinorwatever » Wed 04.20.2005 1:42 am

what are some examples?
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RE: Japanese Names

Postby Mukade » Wed 04.20.2005 2:16 am

Some common family names:

Matsumoto = 松本
Tanaka = 田中
Fujiwara = 藤原
Takeuchi = 竹内

Some common given names:
Girls
Aiko = 愛子
Megumi = 恵
Naoko = 尚子
Boys
Yasuo = 康夫
Akira = 明
Hiroshi = 宏

Keep in mind that with most of these names (in particular, the given names) there are often several characters pronounced "Naoko" or "Akira" - so it's not like there's just one way to write these names. You may meet three Naokos and three Akiras and see six different ways of writing the two names.

Just as an example:
Naoko = 尚子 or 奈緒子 or 直子
Akira = 明 or 晶 or 晃
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RE: Japanese Names

Postby Shibakoen » Wed 04.20.2005 5:40 pm

I talked to some of my friends about their names and they said that the number of strokes, as well as the meaning of the characters are important factors for some parents when they name their children. One friend of mine said she always felt embarrassed back in elementary school because she didn't have some long story about how her parents named her. They just liked her name. As a side note, I've seen many Japanese first names written only in hiragana. All of the names I've seen that are only written in hiragana have been female. I don't know any specifics about any of these naming practices, so if anyone has explainations/details, I'm kinda curious.
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RE: Japanese Names

Postby Mukade » Wed 04.20.2005 8:44 pm

As far as naming children with hiragana names:

During WWII, there was a push to reject anything foreign, including "Chinese" characters, and so there were many children who were given hiragana-only names during that time. They are now mostly in their 70s and 80s.

Recently, haragana-only names are pretty uncommon, but not unheard of. It would just be a matter of the parents' preference. Perhaps they want to give their child a name without committing to a single meaning.
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RE: Japanese Names

Postby Shibakoen » Wed 04.20.2005 11:17 pm

Interesting. Unfortunately, it looks like there might be more tension now with all the protests in China. What is the general feeling in Japan there now? So much is made of reaction in China, but the press here doesn't say much about the feelings in Japan. (There was an article about the high pollen count this year but nothing on Japanese attitudes toward China) I left 6 months ago, so it was before the most recent problems.
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RE: Japanese Names

Postby Schattenjedi » Thu 04.21.2005 6:51 am

Shibakoen wrote:
Interesting. Unfortunately, it looks like there might be more tension now with all the protests in China. What is the general feeling in Japan there now? So much is made of reaction in China, but the press here doesn't say much about the feelings in Japan. (There was an article about the high pollen count this year but nothing on Japanese attitudes toward China) I left 6 months ago, so it was before the most recent problems.


A good Japanese news site in English is http://www.japantimes.co.jp/
The opinion articles on that site can be very interesting at times...especially if you're an international relations buff like me. ;)
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