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Language of Japan


The Japanese language was once a beautiful collage of rhyme and meter, and it still is, but a lot of the language itself has been lost in a sea of broken English words that have not only polluted the Japanese language, but has handicapped the learning processes for millions of Japanese who are struggling to learn to use and say English words properly.



The Japanese have grown too comfortable with misspellings and mispronunciations of literally thousands of English words.    The use of Katakana - a Japanese syllabic writing used for foreign languages - and downright laziness by not trying to figure out the correct way to “say” or “spell” a word. Just because it’s a foreign word and you have a separate writing system for foreign words doesn’t make it okay to misspell or mispronounce a word just because it’s easier to utter.



Words like [gas-o-rin] or [empitsu] just don’t cut it. Personally I think Katakana should be abolished, and in its place should be a rigorous set of guidelines to force the language learner to acquire the correct spelling and pronunciation.
Another thing I’ve noticed is that the level of kanji has gone down in recent years, and although I have no data to support this claim, it’s easy to see that more and more English words are being incorporated in day-to-day Japanese conversation which has a subtle affect on peoples writing, like 「キャンセル、取り消し{とりけし}. If you try to pronounce the word cancel it comes out like “Cyan-sell-ru.” And even the kanji for cancel is almost never used anymore in business Japanese. Just because Japan is becoming more and more internationalized doesn’t mean that the language should, too.


This isn't Los Angeles where there's no official language.   This isn't just any country.   The language must be preserved.  Dumbing down the language is not cool, and should never be accepted.

2 comments:

  1. The English language was once a beautiful collage of rhyme and meter, and it still is, but a lot of the language itself has been lost in a sea of broken French words that have not only polluted the English Language, but has handicapped the learning processes for millions of English people who are trying to learn to use and say French words properly.

    But seriously, languages evolve or die. And Japanese certainly isn't dead. It's not that the Japanese have grown comfortable with misspellings, it's that the original spelling and pronounciations of English does not work in the Japanese sound system. It's just how English people can't pronounce sushi, the sounds to not carry over. And "sushi" is certainly a misspelling of the word since Japanese is not written using Roman letters.

    Also, you can not use rigorous guidelines to force people to use a language in a certain way. A language is a living thing and people will bend it fit their needs.

    It's also good to keep in mind that a lot of Japanese today consists of Chinese words that certainly aren't pronounced like they were in Chinese when they were imported. So empitsu (which as far as I know doesn't come from English) is a butchering of Chinese sounds, so by your logic all Chinese words and sounds should be reverted back to the state they were in in Chinese when they were imported. So you'd be left with some supposedly Japanese words. But they, if you want to take it into the extreme, in turn had to come from somwhere so could be argued that they also aren't part of the Japanese language. Actually, how do you define when Japanese was "good"?

    Also keep in mind when you talk about the dwindling use of kanji (which is debatable) that kanji isn't a Japanese invention, so by your logic it shouldn't have been used to write Japanese at all. Actually, come to think of it, by extension English shouldn't use roman letters.

    Lastly, on the rhyming of Japanese. Read this post on No-sword about rhyming in Japanese hip-hop.

    http://no-sword.jp/blog/2008/09/experiment_like_a_scientist.html

    Certainly proof that modern Japanese rhyming is alive and well, taking good care of the English imports.

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  2. The English language has always been a hodgepodge of words mixed-in with French and many other Indo-European languages. Even the English themselves thought of English as a substandard language until Shakespeare came along. The English never even spoke English in their own country, unless of course you were uneducated and lacked social statues.

    For centuries French and Latin were regarded as the language of ‘ Business & Commerce.’ Latin was highly regarded as the language of history, science, and philosophy. Even according to today’s standards English is still proving to be an inadequate language for learning mainly because of all the idioms and phrasal verbs that go into acquiring the language.



    The Japanese language is under attack by Indo-European languages. Standard Japanese has declined thanks in part to ‘Japlish’ and the excessive use of Romaji and Katakana brought on by foreigners. It is simply unacceptable and arrogant to say that “ English does not work in the Japanese sound system.” Of course, it’s not supposed to work. There’re rules that govern each languages use of pronunciation. If an Englishman cannot pronounce sushi, it’s because he’s thinking in English and not in Japanese and he’s probably untutored in proper pronunciation skills.

    The Japanese language is pure in many respects. Yes, Japan has borrowed their writing system from China, but there should be know doubt that the Japanese language is Japanese. The Japanese language was good when the country was isolated and closed to the outside.

    {{{Also keep in mind when you talk about the dwindling use of kanji (which is debatable) that kanji isn't a Japanese invention, so by your logic it shouldn't have been used to write Japanese at all. Actually, come to think of it, by extension English shouldn't use roman letters.}}}

    It’s merely a matter of Kanji and Hanzi that differentiate in the evolution of the Japanese language. The Japanese language was a spoken language long before Kanji came here, and even after it was adopted into the writing system is too was modified in order to make the Japanese language more refined for the Japanese.

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