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Why should I learn Japanese?

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RE: Why should I learn Japanese?

Postby stevie » Tue 07.10.2007 8:08 am

I think everyone has answered this quite well already. I guess the question is did you go onto forums for other languages and ask the same thing of them?

I actually find that hiragana/katakana/kanji (especially kanji) aids in remembering vocabulary a lot. There is a whole lot to learn and remember in terms of kanji, on top of the actual words and meanings behind them, but I find the extra effort in learning the kanji takes away somewhat from the effort required in learning what a word means (or even how it is pronounced in some cases). Maybe that's just me though.

I don't see languages as hard per se, at least not as the beginner level. It's just kind of systematic, acquiring the knowledge and range of vocabulary to begin communicating at a basic level. I think it probably gets harder from there on in but I haven't found out yet (so far I've only studied casually on the bus to/from work and sometimes in my spare time, as well as what I picked up in Japan, but I'm going to university next year to study either Japanese or Chinese - leaning towards the former right now).

If you have no interest or passion in the language, I would say there's not much point in learning it unless you plan on moving to/working in Japan, indulging yourself in Japanese media in an untranslated form or making Japanese friends.

Rather than ask here, maybe drop a little money on a beginner's book second hand, spend a few days looking at it... see what you think. That'll tell you whether you are interested in the language or not a lot better than we (or you by the sounds of it) can.
Last edited by stevie on Tue 07.10.2007 8:10 am, edited 1 time in total.
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RE: Why should I learn Japanese?

Postby Yudan Taiteki » Tue 07.10.2007 9:03 am

<i>come on doesn't anyone have a serious answer? I chose to go on the internet and ask for advice instead of flipping a coin.</i>

I gave serious advice. If all you want to do is learn some language, and you have no specific interest in Japanese, then don't learn Japanese. Go for one of the languages that is much easier, and more useful to someone living in the US, like Spanish.
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RE: Why should I learn Japanese?

Postby katafei » Tue 07.10.2007 9:36 am

cac8206 wrote:
come on doesn't anyone have a serious answer? I chose to go on the internet and ask for advice instead of flipping a coin.

ハハハハハ。
This is really quite funny!
Do you need advice on whether to choose heads or tails as well??

Sorry about this, couldn't help myself ;)
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RE: Why should I learn Japanese?

Postby spin13 » Tue 07.10.2007 11:19 am

You should learn Japanese because Japanese people will respect you for it, open their arms to you, and accept you into their society.

Oh...

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RE: Why should I learn Japanese?

Postby jenl » Tue 07.10.2007 11:30 am

If you're doing linguistics/history, surely it would help to learn Old English or Latin? (I dabble in Old English occasionally - the surviving poetry is very beautiful - Wulf and Eadwacer being my favourite) Else, I would say Spanish for the reasons given above as well as that living in the US, you're more likely to be able to find native speakers to practice with. Or maybe French if you've got a ready supply of Canadians to hand (if you count what my Canadian relatives speak as French - I don't think the French do ;)).

(to complete my dead-language-love thread derail: I just found that there exists such a thing as a Japanese translation of Beowulf. Excuse me while I retreat to a dark corner to plot ways of acquiring one.)
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RE: Why should I learn Japanese?

Postby Gundaetiapo » Tue 07.10.2007 4:57 pm

Word is our government needs more Arabic speakers.
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RE: Why should I learn Japanese?

Postby Daiki » Wed 07.11.2007 6:14 am

I've decided to start looking for a career. Convince me to choose rocket science. Do you consider it harder/easier to learn than other professions? hard/easy in general, If so why? What is the hardest part for you? Is it difficult to memorize the equations? are there any similarities to Geometry as far as the math involved?

^ That's a bit what you sound like. :D
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RE: Why should I learn Japanese?

Postby UtsusuAssassin » Wed 07.11.2007 2:48 pm

cac8206 wrote:
I've decided I want to learn a foreign language. I'd be taking classes. Convince me to choose Japanese ^.^ Do you consider it harder/easier to learn than other languages? hard/easy in general, If so why? What is the hardest part for you? Is it difficult to memorize the characters? are there any similarities to English as far as grammar?
Thanks for any input

I'm not sure how difficult it is to learn compared to other language because this is the first foreign language I've taken (sorry, no help there X_x). The hardest part for me, is the kanji(I'm sure many would agree with me). As for how difficult is it to memorize the characters, it all depends on the person and how good they are at picking up things and keeping it in their memory. But with hiragana and katakana on its own, it can get pretty overwhelming. I think there are some similarities to english.
\"Hajimete moratte kisu ga saigo no kisu nante kanashii...\" -Me

Translation:
\"I got my very first kiss... but it was also my last kiss[with him], that\'s why I\'m sad...\"

\"Sometimes the most valuable lessons can\'t be learned on a chalkboard.\" -unknown
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RE: Why should I learn Japanese?

Postby Mike Cash » Wed 07.11.2007 3:10 pm

Folks, the OP has quite obviously abandoned us by now.

"Hajimete moratta kisu ga saigo no kisu da nante kanashii..."
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RE: Why should I learn Japanese?

Postby cac8206 » Wed 07.11.2007 8:35 pm

Some of you are very cynical, can't someone do something just for the hell of it anymore? but that's not the point, I wasn't. I wanted to learn something about another language and therefore culture, if I had a preference I wouldn't be asking about it. I've never learned another language before and obviously know little about Japanese except that it's more different, so how am I supposed to 'decide for myself'? fyi I did ask the same questions on other language sites and they were nowhere near as discouraging as some of you have been. I could search the internet for this stuff but I find actual people to be more insightful. I know learning a language is involved and ongoing, if I weren't willing to put in that effort I wouldn't even be talking about it, so quit worrying about my motives so much.
regardless, Thank you, some of you have been very helpful
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RE: Why should I learn Japanese?

Postby Rypermanji » Wed 07.11.2007 10:55 pm

cac8206 wrote:
I know learning a language is involved and ongoing, if I weren't willing to put in that effort I wouldn't even be talking about it, so quit worrying about my motives so much.


Why not try out the language for a little bit and see how you like it. Try out several languages, see what catches your attention.As for what everyone said, they all had every right to say what they did. Most people who say they want to learn a language, especially one as different from English as Japanese, start to learn the language for a little bit and then quit once it gets too hard for them. There have been plenty of people who sound like you who have quit right after starting. We do not know you, and do not know how motivated you are. Therefore do not take what has been said too personally, just realize learning a language IS extremely time consuming and you must have the patience to make a lot of mistakes, and learn from them and continue on. You say that you know what learning a language takes but since you have never learned one before, you do not. Take the advice of everyone, and make the choice that suits you best. I recommend trying out several languages, choosing one that fits your interests and going for it. Why do you want to learn a language? What will you use it for? Where will you ever use it? These are questions you need to ask yourself.
I hope you take into consideration my words as well as those of everyone else who took the time to answer your questions. Perhaps we'll see you in the chat, or in the forums. Anyways, good luck with the search. がんばって!

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グラディスが大好きだよ!
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RE: Why should I learn Japanese?

Postby Ezrach » Thu 07.12.2007 4:26 am

cac8206 wrote:
I could search the internet for this stuff but I find actual people to be more insightful.


Because the internet was written by robots?

You've got to be able to take this site with a grain of salt. When you write something like,

Does any one know of a good search engine?


You'll get some of the following responses:
"Why don't you try searching for it yourself!"

"It's 'anyone', not 'any one'. If you could use proper grammar then I'd answer your question. LRN2GRAMMAR!"

"It's in the wiki."

Just ignore all of the hot air that blows around here, and you'll be fine.
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RE: Why should I learn Japanese?

Postby A_Nozomi » Thu 07.12.2007 6:59 am

cac8206 wrote:
Some of you are very cynical, can't someone do something just for the hell of it anymore? but that's not the point, I wasn't. I wanted to learn something about another language and therefore culture, if I had a preference I wouldn't be asking about it. I've never learned another language before and obviously know little about Japanese except that it's more different, so how am I supposed to 'decide for myself'? fyi I did ask the same questions on other language sites and they were nowhere near as discouraging as some of you have been. I could search the internet for this stuff but I find actual people to be more insightful. I know learning a language is involved and ongoing, if I weren't willing to put in that effort I wouldn't even be talking about it, so quit worrying about my motives so much.
regardless, Thank you, some of you have been very helpful


If you want easy without having to be completely immersed and involved to become fluent then learn Spanish or French. You will be able to compare it to english and the grammar is simple. In fact, Spanish and French are very very similar, if you know one you can scrape by on another. Japanese is much more involved and alien to a natural English speaker. I've always been able to understand languages very well, and with Japanese you need to learn a completely different way of thinking, learn their cultures history and way of life to be able to understand at any decent level. I wouldn't recommend it unless you're commited to many years of study and plan to use it professionally and/or you're going to move to and live in Japan. If you want to learn it on a whim you will lose interest long before you can get to any workable understanding.

All of these were serious answers and that "hot air" isn't condescending, it's wisdom. So appreciate that you get a response and realize it's truth whether its the kind of truth you want to hear or not.
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RE: Why should I learn Japanese?

Postby Ezrach » Thu 07.12.2007 7:30 am

A_Nozomi wrote:
All of these were serious answers and that "hot air" isn't condescending, it's wisdom. So appreciate that you get a response and realize it's truth whether its the kind of truth you want to hear or not.


You forgot to quote George Bernard Shaw. (Because everyone knows that quotes = veracity, right?)

I beg to differ - Most of it is condescending. The responses can be nearly as grating as the original post by an uninformed poster. I'm not trying to justify stupid questions on the internet, either. I'm just saying that a lot of the posters here have gone beyond cynicism and are embarking on a journey into "Sardonic Old-man Land". (Many of whom may even point out that the acronym for such a place is S.O.L., which also happens to be the position they think that you are in for requesting them to tone things down just a little bit)
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RE: Why should I learn Japanese?

Postby A_Nozomi » Thu 07.12.2007 8:00 am

I'm talking about this thread. If you dislike the people here enough to complain about them on this poor guys thread, then why stick around? If these things annoy you to the point that you can't ignore them, then thats your own problem and not this guy. Everyone is being nice enough to give him an honest answer.

NO you cannot learn Japanese just for the hell of it, you won't get very far at all! So you don't like that answer and want to blame the people that are willing to give you the truth? There are some very smart and advanced people here, so if you want advice then TAKE the advice, don't call everyone "cynical".

You forgot to quote George Bernard Shaw. (Because everyone knows that quotes = veracity, right?)
WTF?! ^^^^
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