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Learning Chinese along with Japanese?

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Learning Chinese along with Japanese?

Postby rokito » Sun 06.24.2007 11:01 am

Hi! This is my first post since I left the site last year. And now I will soon be attending a high school that has Chinese, but not japanese. I really love japan and the japanese language, but I have to take chinese (german, spanish, latin, and french arent as appealing.) Im preparing now with books and classes and chinese isn't that difficult, just the tones are killng me! I was wondering if I would have a more difficult time if I studied a little japanese on the side, or if i should wait until junoir or senior year.
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RE: Learning Chinese along with Japanese?

Postby ruisu81 » Sun 06.24.2007 11:38 am

I never realized this but since Kanji comes from Chinese, your classes might help you as far as understanding Kanji meanings. I think that's interesting...can any of you advanced Japanese learners read Chinese?
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RE: Learning Chinese along with Japanese?

Postby Yudan Taiteki » Sun 06.24.2007 12:20 pm

can any of you advanced Japanese learners read Chinese?


I'm not quite sure what you mean -- if you mean "does your knowledge of Japanese allow you to read Chinese", the answer is no. You might be able to pick out words here and there, but it's not enough to actually read a sentence, let alone anything longer than that. Just as a test, I looked around the Chinese Google News and searched 美国 (the Chinese word for USA) to look for some news story that I already knew about. Even when I found one (a story about the recent CIA declassification), I couldn't even understand the first sentence. I was able to tell that 中央情报局 meant "CIA", and I was able to guess a few other things (数百 meaning "hundreds", 解密 probably "declassify", and 文件 is probably "documents"). But if I had not already known what the article was about, I wouldn't have even been able to get that.

However, a good knowledge of kanji from Japanese will help you study the usage of the characters in Chinese. As far as pronunciation and grammar, though, Japanese is no help at all.
Last edited by Yudan Taiteki on Sun 06.24.2007 12:43 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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RE: Learning Chinese along with Japanese?

Postby ruisu81 » Mon 06.25.2007 7:01 am

Heheh...I see. I didn't mean read in that sense. In my mind I was thinking about menus and signs and such. Particularly, if the next time I go to a Shanghainese restaurant with a menu in Chinese, would I wind up eating pigeon again :@
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RE: Learning Chinese along with Japanese?

Postby Jotrin » Fri 06.29.2007 7:46 am

I'm taking took Japanese 3 along with Chinese 1 last year and I didn't have any problems with them combining. The only thing you have to look out for is some Chinese characters have different meanings than their kanji counterparts, and different readings of course.
For example, from what I've worked with in Chinese class, 不 is more or less the same as ne (or n') in French so far as usage goes, but in Japanese it has a wider meaning. My dictionary says it can be used to mean clumsy, ugly, bad, etc in addition to just be a ne-like word.
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