Learn Japanese with JapanesePod101.com

View topic - girls and boys - umbrella terms

girls and boys - umbrella terms

Japanese, general discussion on the language

girls and boys - umbrella terms

Postby tanuki » Thu 12.21.2006 5:48 pm

Hello, people!

You know how in English you have these words "girl" and "boy" which are used for all kinds of young people? I mean, when you say that you went out with a "girl", you don't necessarily mean a "little girl", so you won't get arrested.

What's that "umbrella" term in Japanese?

For the sake of simplicity, I'll just put the female, but I'm looking for male and female.

女 and 女性 sound to me like "adult woman"
少女 and 女の子 sound to me like "little girl" (the "arrested" kind of girl)
姉さん and 姉ちゃん, I have heard, are somewhat offensive, unlike "girl" (is this true?).
ガール seems to simple an answer.

よろしくお願いします。 :)
僕の下手な日本語を直してください。
User avatar
tanuki
 
Posts: 2302
Joined: Sun 09.25.2005 9:00 pm
Location: South America

RE: girls and boys - umbrella terms

Postby two_heads_talking » Thu 12.21.2006 5:52 pm

女 techinically isn't this female .. and neutral of age?

女性 this is, I believe woman or lady..

the rest I believe are pretty accurate.
User avatar
two_heads_talking
 
Posts: 4137
Joined: Thu 04.06.2006 11:03 am
Native language: English

RE: girls and boys - umbrella terms

Postby AJBryant » Thu 12.21.2006 6:25 pm

Try 女の子 and 男の子.


Tony
User avatar
AJBryant
Site Admin
 
Posts: 5313
Joined: Sun 10.09.2005 11:29 am
Location: Indiana
Native language: English
Gender: Male

RE: girls and boys - umbrella terms

Postby Rounin T » Thu 12.21.2006 6:30 pm

女子 and 男子 also work, and I think they might even sound less age-specific.

You could also try 傘。  :D
User avatar
Rounin T
 
Posts: 286
Joined: Thu 10.12.2006 5:32 pm

RE: girls and boys - umbrella terms

Postby Kisshu » Thu 12.21.2006 7:39 pm

The umbrella thing is like the Japanese version for drawing two people's names in or under a heart.... instead, they draw their names under an umbrella with a heart at the very top... something like "we walk under the same umbrella"
ラブラブ!!<3
My Japanese Blog: http://www.jellyfishsushi.blogspot.com
My Art: http://www.k-i-s-s-h-u.deviantart.com
User avatar
Kisshu
 
Posts: 562
Joined: Sat 10.01.2005 1:02 am

RE: girls and boys - umbrella terms

Postby Rounin T » Thu 12.21.2006 7:49 pm

And there you are, Tanuki. An answer to your question, all the way from The Farthest Reaches of the Galaxy. Translate it into 地球語 and you'll be set.
User avatar
Rounin T
 
Posts: 286
Joined: Thu 10.12.2006 5:32 pm

RE: girls and boys - umbrella terms

Postby Yudan Taiteki » Thu 12.21.2006 8:22 pm

two_heads_talking wrote:
女 techinically isn't this female .. and neutral of age?


It's also rather rude/blunt when used in reference to a specific woman (or even women in general). You would not normally want to say something like あの女は誰ですか。 女の人 would be better.
-Chris Kern
User avatar
Yudan Taiteki
 
Posts: 5609
Joined: Wed 11.01.2006 11:32 pm
Native language: English

RE: girls and boys - umbrella terms

Postby tanuki » Fri 12.22.2006 10:57 am

Thanks for your replies. Helpful and interesting. :)

So, how do Japanese ask English-speaking girls to be their girlfriends?

Let's walk under the same umbrella with me?
Last edited by tanuki on Fri 12.22.2006 10:57 am, edited 1 time in total.
僕の下手な日本語を直してください。
User avatar
tanuki
 
Posts: 2302
Joined: Sun 09.25.2005 9:00 pm
Location: South America

RE: girls and boys - umbrella terms

Postby Mike Cash » Fri 12.22.2006 11:41 am

tanuki wrote:
姉さん and 姉ちゃん, I have heard, are somewhat offensive, unlike "girl" (is this true?).


Yes, it's true. No, it isn't true.

Like so many other things about Japanese, the real answer is, "it depends". Answer continues below:

ガール seems to simple an answer.


You're right.

Fortunately, there is a term which will eliminate the guesswork of when お姉さん/お姉ちゃん/姉さん/姉ちゃん are appropriate.

Just use the umbrella term お嬢さん(おじょうさん). It is appropriate to practically all situations, for all females up to about your own age. Even in the cases where it might not be exactly correct or the absolute best choice, nobody will take offense at it.

I always use a policy of using a term of address one "level" below what might be age appropriate, unless the woman is quite obviously elderly. For example:

When おばあさん seems right, I often use おばさん instead.
When おばさん seems right, I often use 奥さん instead.
If there are small children in tow, I use お母さん.
If she's young enough that it isn't safe to presume she's married, I use お嬢さん.

Women I know personally, I often address by name+美人, as though 美人 were a job title like 課長 or マネジャー. It's silly, of course, but I have yet to encounter even one woman who took the slightest offense to it.
User avatar
Mike Cash
 
Posts: 2737
Joined: Sun 08.20.2006 3:38 am
Native language: English

RE: girls and boys - umbrella terms

Postby paul_b » Fri 12.22.2006 11:46 am

Mike Cash wrote:
Women I know personally, I often address by name+美人, as though 美人 were a job title like 課長 or マネジャー. It's silly, of course, but I have yet to encounter even one woman who took the slightest offense to it.


Heh, nice idea.
User avatar
paul_b
 
Posts: 3210
Joined: Thu 06.01.2006 9:35 am

RE: girls and boys - umbrella terms

Postby shin1ro » Sat 12.23.2006 12:03 am

Probably 男の子 and 女の子 are appropriate words, but maybe it sounds a little too young sometimes - probably high school students are the limit to use. (Not sure for the age of boys and girls in English).

お嬢さん is fine but it means only unmarried women. And I can't find any opposite word for men in Japanese...itchy...

男子 and 女子 works for general boys and girls and probably men and women. But to me, they sound a little stiff and formal and also sound like schoolboy and schoolgirl. Probably they're not so popular?

If you address someone as 女 the second or the third person, it's not "rather rude" but "very very rude". You can use it if you hate "her" B) ...It sounds like a femail criminal in a news (they decided to call the female criminal as 女 as "she" in broadcast news recently). 女の人 (neutral) and 女性 (polite) are nice. But 男と女 (as a set) is a word to describe a man and a woman or men and women in general. It sounds neutral, not bad.

(お)姉(ねえ)さん is fine but slangy. It means older sister of course, but it's a kind of slang as well to address a adult woman or a lady, regardless of senior or not. お姉さん sounds more polite than 姉さん but it still sounds slangy. 姉さん probably less popular or maybe too familiar to use if you use it as the second person stranger. (お)兄(にい)さん is a counterpart for a man.

The slangy 姉ちゃん is rude mostly...it's a rather sterotypic word for a punk or a yakuza to address a femail stranger. But it's used in pretty casual conversation among men to address the third person. 兄ちゃん doesn't have any bad taste I think and almost the same as お兄さん.

As for ガール, I'd like 女の子 much more than ガール. Everyone knows it's an English word that means 女の子 but...I don't think the word ガール alone is a popular word in Japanese except for combinational words such as オフィスガール office girl.

Uh...sorry, my post became too messy. I don't really know the umbrella boys and girls nuance and I just named the candidates.

-shin1ro

/* Well, "a boy and a girl under an umbrella" is called あいあい傘(がさ) - I don't know the kanji for the あいあい part...it implies they are in love of course....mmm...romantic! :) */
英語がおかしければご指摘ください(日本語も...)。サンキュ〜 ;-)
User avatar
shin1ro
 
Posts: 496
Joined: Fri 07.21.2006 10:37 pm
Location: Shijonawate
Native language: Japanese
Gender: Male

RE: girls and boys - umbrella terms

Postby tanuki » Mon 12.25.2006 9:53 am

Thanks for the insight, Mike and shin1ro-san. This thread has cleared up all of my doubts (for now)! :)


/* Well, "a boy and a girl under an umbrella" is called あいあい傘(がさ) - I don't know the kanji for the あいあい part...it implies they are in love of course....mmm...romantic! */


According to the WWWJDIC, the kanji are 相合傘. I would've guessed 愛々傘. :D

By the way, look at the (only) example sentence there: 男子学生同士が相合傘か、なかなかオツなシチュエーションだな。

Funny.
Last edited by tanuki on Mon 12.25.2006 9:57 am, edited 1 time in total.
僕の下手な日本語を直してください。
User avatar
tanuki
 
Posts: 2302
Joined: Sun 09.25.2005 9:00 pm
Location: South America

RE: girls and boys - umbrella terms

Postby shin1ro » Wed 12.27.2006 12:18 pm

tanuki wrote:
According to the WWWJDIC, the kanji are 相合傘. I would've guessed 愛々傘. :D

Oh, I see. Thank you for the info. I'm sorry that I was lazy...

By the way, look at the (only) example sentence there: 男子学生同士が相合傘か、なかなかオツなシチュエーションだな。

Haha. Oh, 「オツな」..ですか。反語的というか皮肉な使い方ですね(ironic)...まちがいじゃないけど、もともとpositiveな使い方が普通なので、例文としては素直じゃないですね。ま、いいけど。 ;)

-shin1ro
Last edited by shin1ro on Wed 12.27.2006 12:20 pm, edited 1 time in total.
英語がおかしければご指摘ください(日本語も...)。サンキュ〜 ;-)
User avatar
shin1ro
 
Posts: 496
Joined: Fri 07.21.2006 10:37 pm
Location: Shijonawate
Native language: Japanese
Gender: Male

RE: girls and boys - umbrella terms

Postby paul_b » Wed 12.27.2006 1:03 pm

shin1ro wrote:
By the way, look at the (only) example sentence there: 男子学生同士が相合傘か、なかなかオツなシチュエーションだな。

Haha. Oh, 「オツな」..ですか。反語的というか皮肉な使い方ですね(ironic)...まちがいじゃないけど、もともとpositiveな使い方が普通なので、例文としては素直じゃないですね。ま、いいけど。 ;)

ちなみに、その例文は僕が載せたんです。皮肉というより、話し手(の女性)はそういう趣味があったりします。 :o
User avatar
paul_b
 
Posts: 3210
Joined: Thu 06.01.2006 9:35 am

RE: girls and boys - umbrella terms

Postby shin1ro » Sun 12.31.2006 12:34 am

paul_b wrote:
shin1ro wrote:
By the way, look at the (only) example sentence there: 男子学生同士が相合傘か、なかなかオツなシチュエーションだな。

Haha. Oh, 「オツな」..ですか。反語的というか皮肉な使い方ですね(ironic)...まちがいじゃないけど、もともとpositiveな使い方が普通なので、例文としては素直じゃないですね。ま、いいけど。 ;)

ちなみに、その例文は僕が載せたんです。皮肉というより、話し手(の女性)はそういう趣味があったりします。 :o

あ、なるほど! :D それなら、ぴったりきますね!どうも失礼しました。

-shin1ro
英語がおかしければご指摘ください(日本語も...)。サンキュ〜 ;-)
User avatar
shin1ro
 
Posts: 496
Joined: Fri 07.21.2006 10:37 pm
Location: Shijonawate
Native language: Japanese
Gender: Male


Return to Japanese General Discussion

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 7 guests