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Kanji book

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Kanji book

Postby AKINCI » Tue 02.03.2009 2:29 pm

I have found this on amazon.com:

Essential Kanji: 2,000 Basic Japanese Characters Systematically Arranged For Learning And Reference (Paperback)

Link: http://www.amazon.com/Essential-Kanji-Characters-Systematically-Reference/dp/0834802228/ref=pd_bbs_sr_1?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1233685520&sr=8-1

Do you know if it is a good book, or should i buy another one?
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Re: Kanji book

Postby wccrawford » Tue 02.03.2009 3:49 pm

You know that Heisig's RTK is basically the same thing, a book of Kanji arranged in a certain order for learning easier, right?

Why would you take a chance on a book that nobody talks about instead of going with RTK?
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Re: Kanji book

Postby astaroth » Tue 02.03.2009 3:53 pm

Personally I find the Basic Kanji Books pretty good.
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Re: Kanji book

Postby furrykef » Tue 02.03.2009 3:55 pm

I have this book and I've already reviewed it on Amazon. I'll paste it here:

me wrote:There is no reason to buy this book. It is not a kanji dictionary, so it will be of limited use for that purpose. It also has very limited use as a self-instruction text, because the order the kanji are presented in is illogical for foreign learners (so many times you end up learning a complicated kanji, only to find that simple parts of that kanji turn up as their own kanji *later in the book*), and there are no mnemonics of any kind. Many compound words are presented, but there is no information on how to actually use them, so you cannot use it to learn new vocabulary unless you already know the words. The stroke order diagrams are mildly helpful, but you can find animated ones online for free (WWWJDIC will have a diagram for probably every single kanji in the book). Basically, the book amounts to one big kanji list. Henshall's Guide to Remembering Japanese Characters, Heisig's Remembering the Kanji, etc. are much better than this.


That pretty much still is my opinion of the book.

wccrawford wrote:You know that Heisig's RTK is basically the same thing, a book of Kanji arranged in a certain order for learning easier, right?


I don't find it similar at all to RTK. It certainly has nothing to recommend it over RTK unless you insist on learning on'yomi and kun'yomi, and I don't think it's a good idea to learn those from a kanji book.

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Re: Kanji book

Postby AKINCI » Tue 02.03.2009 3:59 pm

Thanks guys for your answers.

Greets
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Re: Kanji book

Postby Yudan Taiteki » Tue 02.03.2009 4:52 pm

the order the kanji are presented in is illogical for foreign learners (so many times you end up learning a complicated kanji, only to find that simple parts of that kanji turn up as their own kanji *later in the book*


While I agree with the rest of your criticisms, this one I don't. Aside from Heisig, most kanji books introduce kanji in some order resembling frequency -- that is, you won't learn characters with simple forms that are not common (e.g. 尺, 貝, 羊, 弓). I can see the argument for covering the simpler characters first, but if the goal is not to learn all the kanji at once a-la-Heisig but to combine kanji with reading and build both skills at once, it's a lot more logical to introduce a complex but common character like 議 rather than first introducing 羊, 我, and 言 and only then presenting 議. Especially because knowing the meaning and readings of the components is not necessarily going to help you remember the more complex characters.

And I agree, it's not the same thing as RTK. IMO, RTK is better than these crippled dictionaries that masquerade as textbooks -- at least RTK has a plan, an organization, and a learning strategy. Books like this and K&K are just lists of kanji and words, and you're never going to learn Japanese just by making 5,000 flash cards and going through the kanji from 1 until you hit 1945.
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Re: Kanji book

Postby two_heads_talking » Tue 02.03.2009 5:01 pm

Yudan Taiteki wrote: and you're never going to learn Japanese just by making 5,000 flash cards and going through the kanji from 1 until you hit 1945.


Well, you could learn it, but the cards are stacked against you. (sorry, I couldn't resist using that pun)
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