Yudan Taiteki wrote:
I've pretty much said my piece against Heisig. If people want to use it despite my objections, that's not my concern.
Considering your posts about Heisig it seemed to be very important for you to more or less prevent people from even testing his method. I am amazed at the vitriol - "fraud", "the devil" and so on - you and some other people around here prefer as soon as Heisig is mentioned. If you are happy with the amount of kanji you have been able to learn using other methods, great. But I guess that I am not alone in being frustrated with how easy it is to forget kanji, considering the amount of people using Heisig (or other component-based methods).
And BTW, if some students of Heisig/kanji are stupid think that all they have learned The Entire Japanese Language when they are finished with memorizing 2000+ kanji, don't you think reality will correct this illusion pretty soon?
You didn't indicate how much Japanese you are able to read, though. Can you read a newspaper article, or a short story, or a recipe, or instructions on an appliance, or how to fill out a government form? If not, then what has Heisig really done for you, in terms of practical language use?
I am still learning on an intermediate level. Heisig never pretends that you will be able to read a newspaper after learning kanji via his book. What he DO claim is that it will be easier for you to get to that level after knowing the full set of kanji in his book, since you don't forget kanji the way most students and even "natives" do. Learning kanji is not a goal in itself but just one step to smooth out further learning of the language (or Chinese for that matter).
(I agree with Infidel's comments, although it is true that the kanjiclinic.com writer did use Heisig to good profit. HOWEVER, keep in mind that she is (a) living in Japan, (b) married to a Japanese native, and (c) had considerable proficiency in the spoken language when she started using Heisig. All of these are significant advantages, and they're very similar to the circumstances Heisig himself was in when he developed his own method.)
And despite all these enormous advantages she decided she needed a component-based approach (which is what Heisig is in essence) to learn "how not to forget the Meaning and Writing of Japanese characters"! The beauty of Heisig's approach is that it can be equally well used by beginners or advanced students like the author of Kanji Clinic. Are you suggesting that a beginner would have more trouble learning kanji this way?
Funny. I found Yudans opinions particularly misinformed. He can't even see the difference between "kanji" (CHINESE CHARACTERS!!) and the Japanese language.
On the contrary, I understand that very well. But why would you ever want to learn kanji apart from the Japanese language? What's the point? That's like memorizing lists of words in a foreign language but never doing anything else.
For a starter: the kanji in Heisig's book almost of equal value if you want to study Chinese. The Chinese writing system is per se one of the most beautiful scripts ever developed by mankind. If you, like me, are interested in calligraphy (which was the main reason why I at all started to dabble with kanji) it makes sense to have an intimate "relationship" with the logic of the the kanji/hanzi system.
The main difference between other writing systems ("alphabets") is that kanji in themselves DO have meaning. If you know enough kanji it helps you a lot to decipher words that otherwise would be impenetrable without a dictionary (even if you may or may not be able to pronounce them). How come that a person fluent in kanji also can get a hint of written Chinese?
What makes you think that most students of kanji according to Heisig see that as excluding everything else when finished with this initial step? ("but never doing anything else"). Personally I am confident that it will help me to memorize words and their kanji much better than I could before starting all over with Heisig a second time.