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Postby habs_360 » Sat 10.07.2006 1:08 am

I have just read something very interesting. Is it true that, if one goes to Japan and speaks Japanese fluently but is not Japanese, the "locals" will consider him or her as a "strange foreigner", but if you only know "basic" Japanese (even if it's broken) you will be accepted more easily?
Dreams that do come true can be as unsettling as those that don't...Brett Butler
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RE: Question

Postby keatonatron » Sat 10.07.2006 4:22 am

I think there's some truth to it, but it's not that simple.

Many people who are interested in foreigners are interested in the ones that don't know anything about Japan. The Japanese people want to be able to introduce Japanese concepts to the foreigners and have the foreigners freak out with confusion. For these people, a foreigner who is accustomed to Japanese culture (and language) is quite boring. I have occasionally run into these types of people before; at first they will be really interested in me, but as soon as they find out I already know and understand what they want to show me, they lose interest really fast.

However, if you can speak Japanese well you can make friends with the normal Japanese people--the ones who will be interested in you for who you are, not for your nationality. Those types of people often don't speak a lot of English (because they don't care about interacting with foreigners), and therefore are more interested in people who can speak good Japanese.

I can honestly say I've had much more fulfilling, enjoyable friendships after my Japanese got good.
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RE: Question

Postby habs_360 » Sun 10.08.2006 5:38 pm

Thank you Keatonatron...
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RE: Question

Postby Mike Cash » Sun 10.08.2006 5:48 pm

keatonatron wrote:
I think there's some truth to it, but it's not that simple.

.....as soon as they find out I already know and understand what they want to show me, they lose interest really fast.



And here fast doesn't mean "within a few days or weeks". It means a matter of seconds. The change is quite interesting to watch.
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RE: Question

Postby Zakane » Sun 10.08.2006 7:11 pm

keatonatron wrote:
I think there's some truth to it, but it's not that simple.

Many people who are interested in foreigners are interested in the ones that don't know anything about Japan. The Japanese people want to be able to introduce Japanese concepts to the foreigners and have the foreigners freak out with confusion. For these people, a foreigner who is accustomed to Japanese culture (and language) is quite boring. I have occasionally run into these types of people before; at first they will be really interested in me, but as soon as they find out I already know and understand what they want to show me, they lose interest really fast.

However, if you can speak Japanese well you can make friends with the normal Japanese people--the ones who will be interested in you for who you are, not for your nationality. Those types of people often don't speak a lot of English (because they don't care about interacting with foreigners), and therefore are more interested in people who can speak good Japanese.

I can honestly say I've had much more fulfilling, enjoyable friendships after my Japanese got good.



Funny Ive seen this happen but in reverse here in the states. Suppose all people sort of think alike :D
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