6 responses

  1. Virginia
    February 23, 2013

    Interesting article. As my mother tongue is Spanish, I may not realize it, but Spanish is actually a very challenging language because of its verb tense conjugation, Japanese people find this very difficult.
    When I was a kid, I started watching japanese anime. One of the first things that I liked about Japanese is that I couldn’t relate it to any other language I was surrounded with (Spanish, Portuguese, French, English, German, Italian, etc.) I became so curious about Japanese that I wanted to learn it. And I love hearing from other Japanese language learners’ experiences, as you said, we are not alone! :)

    As always, regards from Argentina!

    • Clayton MacKnight
      February 25, 2013

      I feel like Spanish is a lot easier for English speakers to pick up though. Mostly because we can at least read everything. :) Japanese has a bit of learning curve because of the writing systems. Spanish is also another very popular language to learn. I’d like to find some time to re-learn Spanish. One of these days…

  2. Fumi
    March 9, 2013

    I do not think I would learn Japanese if I am a foreigner.
    I teach Japanese language and I am so impressed with my student’s effort.
    I myself, forget Kanji sometimes, it is very embarrassing specially in front of my student…
    I am so happy there are many people who study Japanese.

    • Clayton MacKnight
      March 10, 2013

      Fumi! Thanks for the comment.

      To be honest, I think what is so attractive about Japanese is that it is difficult. It’s an amazing challenge and the feeling of being able to understand something natively in such a difficult language is so amazing!

      • Igiri
        March 10, 2013

        Clayton – I think in one of your posts you say that Japanese has four different alphabets, and I think this is misleading. When describing writing systems, linguists differentiate between those that are alphabetic and those that are not, and the traditional Japanese writing system is not alphabetic. (Only ‘romaji’ is alphabetic.) I am being a bit pedantic, but I think it’s an interesting distinction, and I imagine many people who don’t know Japanese would find it fascinating to know that there are languages, like Japanese, that don’t traditionally use alphabetic scripts. They might even become sufficiently curious to want to learn more!

      • Clayton MacKnight
        March 10, 2013

        That’s a good point. I kind of struggle between should I call them alphabets and be understood, or a writing system and people (non-linguists) wonder what in the world I’m talking about. But, you are right, calling them ‘writing systems’ is probably the most accurate. It’s just hard for me to imagine that concept clearly. Where if someone told me it was an alphabet, I could understand it a little better although technically incorrect, but that’s just me. Does that make sense?

        Anyway, good point and I’ll make a note of it for future posts.

        I fixed the current article. Thanks for the comment and correction!

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