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Arekkusu’s TAC 2012 Team ne nur

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407 messages over 51 pages: 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 ... 7 ... 50 51 Next >>
TixhiiDon
Tetraglot
Senior Member
Japan
Joined 4552 days ago

772 posts - 1474 votes 
Speaks: English*, Japanese, German, Russian
Studies: Georgian

 
 Message 49 of 407
27 November 2010 at 12:18am | IP Logged 
Arekkusu wrote:
I was coming to the same conclusion after reading everything. While
they probably do mean to congratulate the foreigner on his learning efforts, I gather
it's sort of a automatic set phrase they tell any foreigner who's bothered at all to
learn even the slightest bit of Japanese, for lack of anything better to say.


It's not necessarily that they can't think of anything better to say. On the contrary,
in Japan there is no need to think of anything better to say.

I think one of the most interesting things about the way Japanese people use their
language is that it is perfectly acceptable to use 決まり文句 in all situations. In
the West, there is a certain social pressure to come up with something original to say
to assure your conversation partner that you are being sincere, but this phenomenon
doesn't exist in Japan at all.

Every time you leave work you say お先に失礼します, and every time someone is sick you
say お大事に, and the conversation partner is perfectly happy and reassured to hear
these well-worn phrases. The concept of "cliche" just doesn't seem to exist here.

Edited by TixhiiDon on 27 November 2010 at 12:23am

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Arekkusu
Hexaglot
Senior Member
Canada
bit.ly/qc_10_lec
Joined 4469 days ago

3971 posts - 7746 votes 
Speaks: English, French*, GermanC1, Spanish, Japanese, Esperanto
Studies: Italian, Norwegian, Mandarin, Romanian, Estonian

 
 Message 50 of 407
29 November 2010 at 5:03pm | IP Logged 
TixhiiDon, I agree with you. I think I had underestimated the importance of these set phrases in Japanese culture. I suppose most Japanese people have put little thought into why they say it.
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Arekkusu
Hexaglot
Senior Member
Canada
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Joined 4469 days ago

3971 posts - 7746 votes 
Speaks: English, French*, GermanC1, Spanish, Japanese, Esperanto
Studies: Italian, Norwegian, Mandarin, Romanian, Estonian

 
 Message 51 of 407
10 December 2010 at 6:51pm | IP Logged 
Yesterday, I had an epiphany. One of those moments where you realize what's been there all along, but you could never see.

Speaking a foreign language makes me happy.

Genuinely, viscerally, speaking another language brings me happiness.

Some people seem to love reading, but I can never finish a novel. I love reading to get information -- and I do read all the time -- but I can't stay interested long enough to finish a novel. In turn, some of these people will even learn a language and refrain from speaking it until they have reached a certain level, sometimes after years. I could never understand that. I always speak right from the start and not doing so takes away all the pleasure in learning a language. But now I get it: the things that move us internally, that motivate us, that keep the passion alive come from different places.

It's not about what method works for each of us, it's about finding the way that feeds our inner passion. A method may very well be instrinsically effective for everyone, but if it doesn't light up a fire in you, then it's useless.

I now understand it clearly: for me, expressing myself in another language, exchanging thoughts with a person from a different culture and language provides me with a deep-rooted sense of happiness and fulfillment. More so than eating, playing sports, singing, writing, reading, etc. Speaking a foreign language evidently triggers hormones in my brain that bring me happiness.

Some people claim that there is no such thing as talent in language-learning, only hard work. It's possible though that beyond talent, some kind of physiological condition is necessary to make a person passionate enough to strive at learning a foreign language. If that's not talent, then what is it?

Edited by Arekkusu on 10 December 2010 at 6:57pm

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budonoseito
Pro Member
United States
budobeyondtechnRegistered users can see my Skype Name
Joined 4893 days ago

261 posts - 343 votes 
Studies: French, Japanese
Personal Language Map

 
 Message 52 of 407
11 December 2010 at 3:52am | IP Logged 
Congratulations on your epiphany. It is nice to realize that enjoying the journey is a
reward in and of itself.
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Arekkusu
Hexaglot
Senior Member
Canada
bit.ly/qc_10_lec
Joined 4469 days ago

3971 posts - 7746 votes 
Speaks: English, French*, GermanC1, Spanish, Japanese, Esperanto
Studies: Italian, Norwegian, Mandarin, Romanian, Estonian

 
 Message 53 of 407
12 December 2010 at 7:37am | IP Logged 
This morning, I had a wonderful 3 1/2 hour Skype session with a new Japanese partner. Half of it was in
Japanese. He said he would never have guessed that I've only been studying for a little over 2 years. Felt
nice. I was slightly apprehensive beforehand, but it exceeded my expectations, I think.

We had a Japanese nabe party tonight and 2 Japanese friends came. I could follow most of their
conversation and jump in at will.

The last few days, I've really been feeling like I've made a lot of progress.
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Arekkusu
Hexaglot
Senior Member
Canada
bit.ly/qc_10_lec
Joined 4469 days ago

3971 posts - 7746 votes 
Speaks: English, French*, GermanC1, Spanish, Japanese, Esperanto
Studies: Italian, Norwegian, Mandarin, Romanian, Estonian

 
 Message 54 of 407
25 December 2010 at 1:08am | IP Logged 
My main problem when reading is my lack of kanji knowledge. Consequently, I've decided that 2011 would
the year I'd learn all kanji.

While I don't like SRS as a learning method, it appeared as the obvious method. After two days, it appears
obvious it's the wrong method.

Most kanji will show up either as the head of a verb, or as part of a compound, where the various readings
become meaningful. In isolation, especially if accompanied by 4 or 5 different readings, the data is lifeless
and stripped from any usefullness.

I'm not sure what to do, but if I'm going to learn all kanji, it will have to be in context.
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g-bod
Diglot
Senior Member
United KingdomRegistered users can see my Skype Name
Joined 5070 days ago

1485 posts - 2002 votes 
Speaks: English*, Japanese
Studies: French, German

 
 Message 55 of 407
25 December 2010 at 1:18am | IP Logged 
Five kanji a day and you will have the jouyou at the end of the year - but depending on
your start point this could be quite a challenge! I am still aiming for this as part
of my TAC for 2011, although even if I double my current ability and hit one thousand
characters, this will be significant and useful progress.

I still swear by SRS for learning kanji. I've experimented with using SRS for a number
of aspects of Japanese but the only deck I started right in the beginning and am still
reviewing and adding to two and a half years later is the kanji compound deck. I only
learn the kanji as part of example words (usually taken from the example word list for
that kanji in whatever textbook I'm using at the time), never on their own and I test
in both directions - being able to read (and understand) a word written in kanji, and
being able to write the word being given the reading *and* the meaning (essential
because of the sheer number of homonyms). This is then backed up with other reading,
as words never seem to get reinforced until I meet them a few times in the wild.

How would you rate your kanji/reading ability at the moment?
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Arekkusu
Hexaglot
Senior Member
Canada
bit.ly/qc_10_lec
Joined 4469 days ago

3971 posts - 7746 votes 
Speaks: English, French*, GermanC1, Spanish, Japanese, Esperanto
Studies: Italian, Norwegian, Mandarin, Romanian, Estonian

 
 Message 56 of 407
25 December 2010 at 2:13pm | IP Logged 
g-bod wrote:


How would you rate your kanji/reading ability at the moment?

Hmm... I probably know all the ones you'd find in intermediate materials. To be fair, I usually know the kanji
of words I know. It's not knowing how to read new words that bugs me. I can sometime extrapolate and
guess the pronunciation of part of a compound, but it's big deterrent, actually.


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