Learn Japanese with JapanesePod101.com

View topic - Why You Want To Learn Japanese

Why You Want To Learn Japanese

Japanese, general discussion on the language

Re: Why You Want To Learn Japanese

Postby furrykef » Sat 07.12.2008 10:16 pm

I may have posted in this thread before (like a year ago)... I'm not sure. If I did, I'm posting again. :P

Many people see language learning as a means to an end, but I've come to see it as an end in itself. I learn languages because it's fun and not really for any other particular reason. Once I realized that it's fun to do this stuff, language learning became probably 100x easier. I always struggled with Spanish in school, but now Spanish is very easy for me. I don't write it flawlessly, but in writing (certainly not in speech) I can fool native speakers for a little while, like if I'm in a chat room or if I'm writing only two paragraphs or something. Spanish is still the only foreign language I can really speak right now, but that's because I only picked up this language hobby about two years ago.

My interest in Japanese in particular stems from video games. 10 or so years ago I knew that there were many interesting games that were released only in Japan. (By now a good portion of them have been translated, but some of them still have not.) I've also always been interested in making video games, and knowing Japanese would obviously be handy in the games industry. (This is becoming a reality and I should have my work in a couple of Nintendo DS games soon.) But if these were my only reasons, I'd never have any success in studying Japanese, because Japanese is much too hard for that. Even an "easy" language like Spanish is too hard for that. But if you think it's fun, the difficulty goes away and it's only a question of how much time you give it. So I got into it because of video games, but I'm sticking with it because -- what can I say? -- Japanese is cool as hell. :) Confusing as hell, but cool as hell too.

I also plan to learn Italian -- I don't know if I plan to learn it to native-like fluency -- but I'm waiting until I'm more well-rounded in Spanish and until I know a bit more Japanese. Juggling two languages is crazy enough as it is. There are so many languages I want to learn, though! I'd also like to learn at least Chinese, Korean, Finnish, German, and even the artificial language Lojban. So many languages, so little time!

- Kef
Founder of Learning Languages Through Video Games.
Also see my lang-8 journal, where you can help me practice Japanese (and Spanish, and Italian!)
User avatar
furrykef
 
Posts: 1572
Joined: Thu 01.10.2008 9:20 pm
Native language: Eggo (ワッフル語の方言)
Gender: Male

Re: Why You Want To Learn Japanese

Postby MuzikalNotes » Mon 07.14.2008 6:56 pm

Well, this isn't exactly a reason, but more like an inspiration. I, like most people I know, started learning about Japan from anime and manga, but I wasn't actually interested in learning the language until, one day, I was very bored, and then started thinking about foreign languages out of nowhere. Next thing I knew, I was looking around for resources to learn Japanese online. Unfortunately, they were all websites that didn't cater to my needs (I wanted to learn reading, writing, and listening over speaking), so I got bored very quickly.
A couple of months later, I found this thread on a forum that linked to some sites to learn Japanese, and then I got back to learning it. These sites taught me a lot of things (including my first introduction to kana), and so it restarted. Unfortunately, I suddenly lost interest again (I lose interest easily), so, yet again, I quit for a couple of months.
Then, when I found an old bookmark linking to one of my old Japanese sites, I suddenly got new interest into it - and I'm not going to lose interest so easily this time, and I'm going to make sure of that!
Last edited by MuzikalNotes on Mon 07.14.2008 7:49 pm, edited 1 time in total.
User avatar
MuzikalNotes
 
Posts: 6
Joined: Mon 07.14.2008 11:14 am

Re: Why You Want To Learn Japanese

Postby chikara » Mon 07.14.2008 7:31 pm

MuzikalNotes wrote:..... I, like most people here, started learning about Japan from anime and manga .......

:shock:

That generalisation is very demeaning to many of the people on this forum including myself :evil:
Don't complain to me that people kick you when you're down. It's your own fault for lying there
User avatar
chikara
 
Posts: 3576
Joined: Tue 07.11.2006 10:48 pm
Location: Australia (SA)
Native language: English (Australian)
Gender: Male

Re: Why You Want To Learn Japanese

Postby MuzikalNotes » Mon 07.14.2008 7:58 pm

chikara wrote:
MuzikalNotes wrote:..... I, like most people here, started learning about Japan from anime and manga .......

:shock:

That generalisation is very demeaning to many of the people on this forum including myself :evil:

Sorry about that. Edited my post, even though I'm worried about how that's not enough (even though I probably shouldn't be worrying at all); I wasn't trying to offend anyone at all. Sorry.
User avatar
MuzikalNotes
 
Posts: 6
Joined: Mon 07.14.2008 11:14 am

Re: Why You Want To Learn Japanese

Postby chikara » Mon 07.14.2008 8:04 pm

MuzikalNotes wrote:..... I wasn't trying to offend anyone at all. Sorry.

No worries. :)

It would have been a good idea to have read thru' a few threads in the non-anime and manga fora to get a more general idea of "most people" here before making such a generalisation. Always be very careful of making generalisations :wink:
Don't complain to me that people kick you when you're down. It's your own fault for lying there
User avatar
chikara
 
Posts: 3576
Joined: Tue 07.11.2006 10:48 pm
Location: Australia (SA)
Native language: English (Australian)
Gender: Male

Re: Why You Want To Learn Japanese

Postby becki_kanou » Mon 07.14.2008 8:18 pm

chikara wrote:
MuzikalNotes wrote:..... I, like most people here, started learning about Japan from anime and manga .......

:shock:

That generalisation is very demeaning to many of the people on this forum including myself :evil:


You're only teasing, I hope? I think a lot of people do get interested in Japanese through anime/manga. I know I did. And just because a lot of anime fans are stupid fan-boys doesn't mean that everyone who likes anime is. Also many of us outgrow it and go on to gain a real appreciation of the language and culture.

edited: Oops, I somehow missed your second post. Disregard the above...
そうだ、嬉しいんだ、生きる喜び!
例え胸の傷が痛んでも。
User avatar
becki_kanou
 
Posts: 3402
Joined: Sat 04.19.2008 10:09 pm
Location: Hyogo, Japan
Skype chat: yes_becki
Native language: U.S. English, 米語
Gender: Female

Re: Why You Want To Learn Japanese

Postby chikara » Mon 07.14.2008 8:31 pm

becki_kanou wrote:You're only teasing, I hope? ......

edited: Oops, I somehow missed your second post. Disregard the above...

Yes, I was teasing to a degree (as you realised by my subsequent post) but also pointing out the danger of ill informed generalisations.

When I started seriously studying Japanese (in an adult class) there were 14 students in the class 9 of which were anime fan-boys. Only 5 of us completed the first year and of those 5 there was only 1 of the anime fan-boys. Maybe that experience has coloured my view of these people. :)
Don't complain to me that people kick you when you're down. It's your own fault for lying there
User avatar
chikara
 
Posts: 3576
Joined: Tue 07.11.2006 10:48 pm
Location: Australia (SA)
Native language: English (Australian)
Gender: Male

Re: Why You Want To Learn Japanese

Postby Yudan Taiteki » Mon 07.14.2008 8:45 pm

As I've said, in my (albeit limited) teaching experience, in which I've seen 120 first year students a year, I have not noticed any correlation between anime fandom and the success the students have in the Japanese program.
-Chris Kern
User avatar
Yudan Taiteki
 
Posts: 5609
Joined: Wed 11.01.2006 11:32 pm
Native language: English

Re: Why You Want To Learn Japanese

Postby Ukeath » Sat 07.26.2008 10:59 pm

I never took a foreign language in school because it didn't seem interesting. Then I started picking up Japanese terms in Kendo class. Then after looking on the internet I realized it was possible to learn a second language. Someday I want to travel to Japan and watch a Kendo tournament.

I also like some anime and think it would be cool to read the labels on things in the show. My only problem is I don't know anyone else who speaks it, so everything I learn I forget right away. Hopefully that will change some day.
User avatar
Ukeath
 
Posts: 53
Joined: Wed 05.21.2008 9:25 pm

Re: Why You Want To Learn Japanese

Postby Ragevx1 » Fri 08.01.2008 6:46 pm

My reason is J-Pop, I want to learn the language because I want to be able to understand what they are singing (I really love J-Pop). My reason could have been anime... but they create dubs and have subs. Some songs have subs and translation but they are hard to find sometime and too follow. Also maybe hoping to go to Japan one day when I can speak the language more then fluently, probably so I can attend J-Pop concerts ;)
Ragevx1
 
Posts: 65
Joined: Wed 07.30.2008 12:30 pm

Re: Why You Want To Learn Japanese

Postby clay » Sat 08.02.2008 8:20 pm

This may be our longest continuous thread. I actually remember when TokyoRoze started it (05 Feb 2005 04:27 pm), although I don't think I've posted my story :)

I had no clue what anime or even manga was when I started Japanese. I've come to like some manga a lot, but I've never gotten into anime. I can understand the appeal, though.

I became interested in Japanese because of a girl (not what you think) and a guy (definitely not what you think). I was volunteering at a language school for international students and met a few Japanese. One girl, Kumi, taught me very basic information (three writing systems: hiragana, katakana, and kanji; "konnichiwa"; and how to bow). That evening (a Friday) I bought Pimsleur's basic Japanese tapes. Over the weekend, I listened to it as much as possible. On Monday I impressed her with Pimsleuristic phrases, "ogenki desu ka? genki desu. okagasamade. nanika tabetai desu."

I met a teenage Japanese boy, Shintarou, who taught me the cool words (namely 'sugei') to the embarrassment of his parents. After meeting such nice people as Kumi and Shintarou I decided Japanese would be a nice thing to know. I guess my reason for learning Japanese, moving to Japan, marrying a Japanese lady, starting TJP, etc was because my first impressions of Japanese people was so positive.
TheJapanShop.com- Japanese language learning materials
Checkout our iPhone apps: TheJapanesePage.com/iPhone
User avatar
clay
Site Admin
 
Posts: 2809
Joined: Fri 01.21.2005 9:39 am
Location: Florida

Re: Why You Want To Learn Japanese

Postby Dannathrik » Sat 08.09.2008 8:22 pm

Well, my reasons are a little more diverse :)

My fascination in the language started at the year ".". Since before I can remember, I've always found interest in Japanese culture. The language, the food, the customs, the architecture, the people...
I was fascinated, but learning Japanese never crossed my mind.
Until I met my girlfriend :P She's always been into anime. Everything about it. She got me into it, and this is what sparked new life into my interest in Japan.
Ah, Fruits Basket...

Anyway, that still wasn't enough to inspire me to learn the language.

I went off of anime for a little while, until I watched a new one that started in April this year. "To Love-Ru" (Don't be shocked). It was strange because this time, I found myself listening more to the sentence structure and the formation of each individual word, than I did reading the subtitles.

This sparked an interest, and I lived off of tourist phrase websites for two days.

Well, an internet pop-up came up on screen on the third day. I'd had no success, so I checked it out (primarily because of its mention of Japanese and Science). As Japan is one of the leaders in the race for technology, I feel that (logically) the study of Japanese will also give me a bit more of a edge in studying Science.

So, a link on Yahoo answers directed me to this very site, and now I'm actually making progress!

But, of course, who WOULDN'T love to watch Anime without subtitles? :wink:
User avatar
Dannathrik
 
Posts: 5
Joined: Mon 08.04.2008 11:01 pm
Location: United Kingdom

Re: Why You Want To Learn Japanese

Postby clay » Sat 08.09.2008 9:06 pm

So, a link on Yahoo answers directed me to this very site, and now I'm actually making progress!


Please tell Yahoo,thank you 8)

Glad you stopped by. I suggest starting with Hiragana. (http://www.thejapanesepage.com/beginners/hiragana) That should give you a good taste of the language.
TheJapanShop.com- Japanese language learning materials
Checkout our iPhone apps: TheJapanesePage.com/iPhone
User avatar
clay
Site Admin
 
Posts: 2809
Joined: Fri 01.21.2005 9:39 am
Location: Florida

Re: Why You Want To Learn Japanese

Postby Miaow » Tue 08.12.2008 8:57 pm

Well, I've been interested in languages since I was a little kid and was overjoyed when I was able to start French in 7th grade. I took French until my junior year in high school, and I really enjoyed it (I took all the French classes that high school offered.)

Also, since I ws a kid, I was intrigued by the way Asian characters looked. When my family and I went to Chinatown, I'd look at the menu and try to reason out as many characters as I could (i.e. "hmm, this set of squiggles appears next to all of the items with "Chicken" in the title, I'll bet it means Chicken." and so on).

In college I discovered anime and manga, which helped me to decide just *which* Asian language to study. I also loved how Japanese sounded, and I would listen to Japanese broadcasts on my shortwave radio just because I liked the rhythm of Japanese speech, even if I didn't know what they were saying! (I listened to Chinese as well - it's also very cool sounding!)

So in short, my impetus for learning Japanese was a lifelong curiosity about Asian languages and a desire to experience anime and manga in its original form.

Oh, also people have always said "Japanese is hard" - this made Japanese all the more appealing to me ! ^_^
= ^. .^ =
~Miaow~
にゃあにゃあ
User avatar
Miaow
 
Posts: 51
Joined: Tue 10.16.2007 8:49 pm
Location: Romeoville, IL

Re: Why You Want To Learn Japanese

Postby BrianM » Tue 08.12.2008 11:22 pm

I first saw Kairo(Pulse), the Japanese version, back in the summer of 06 and completely fell in love with Japan. Seems strange to fall in love with a country from a horror movie but hey, thats how it happened. Anyways, as I began to see other movies I saw a major difference in the culture and people.
Very respectful, no needless sex scenes in movies, actual meaning in the plot, etc. After that I began learning all the basics and loved it so much.

That fall 06 I entered Rutgers Newark 大学, and they didn't have Japanese, the school is terrible btw. So i talked to the language dept's head person and she helped me arrange the class to be a distant learning option. Basically we sat in a room while Japanese class in the other Rutgers(New Brunswick), was taught. My teacher was amazing and she helped so much, actually made EVERYONE an integral part of the class.
Sadly only 101, and 102 is offered so now I have to study on my own. I am keeping up with the study though. Since I came back from japan on July 30 I have gone through 2 chapters and 36 kanji so I am doing fine, that is until school starts:(.
がんばてください!
User avatar
BrianM
 
Posts: 151
Joined: Thu 09.14.2006 9:03 pm
Location: U.S.A
Native language: English/Portuguese

PreviousNext

Return to Japanese General Discussion

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 6 guests