Learn Japanese

Wasei-Eigo: I Can’t Believe It’s Not English!

Borrowing words from other languages is a phenomenon as old as language itself. That’s why, even though you probably don’t speak French, Latin, German, Spanish, AND Japanese, you can somehow comprehend the following … [Read more...]

How to Spice up Your ALT Lessons with the Nine Intelligences!

The Nine Intelligences: by itself the term sounds like an elite spy group or a color-coded hero team. "Gentlemen, we're clearly in over our heads.  The world is in danger.  Only The Nine Intelligences can save us … [Read more...]

So You Want To Be A Japanese Translator? Starring Susanna Fessler

Here at Tofugu we get countless emails from people who want to be Japanese translators. While my own experiences are limited, I thought there would be no better person to ask than my former Japanese literature professor … [Read more...]

How To Be A Japanese Literary Translator And Interpreter, Starring Jonathan Lloyd-Davies

We at Tofugu get a lot of emails from people saying they want to go into Japanese translation, looking for advice. To help you folks out (and to help anyone who's ever been somewhat interested in translation), we did a … [Read more...]

How To Be A Manga Translator, Interpreter, and Freelance translator, Starring Jocelyne Allen

One of the emails we get over and over again is: "I want to become a Japanese translator, what do I need to do?" We have some ideas, but we certainly don't have a lot of experience in this field, so we found people who do … [Read more...]

Weird Kanji – Unusual Readings and their Origins

Good old kanji! You know, the 50,000 some odd characters borrowed from Chinese that are used to read Japanese? They're daunting at first, but get easier once you know the rules. There's the on’yomi and kun’yomi readings, … [Read more...]

Gaming To Learn Japanese

Teaching yourself Japanese isn’t easy, and let’s face it, it takes a large amount of time, effort, and dedication to make noticeable progress. After coming home from a long day of school or work, sometimes the last thing … [Read more...]

How To Speak Beautiful Japanese: An Interview With Yomiuri TV Announcer Naomi Uemura

I know most everybody here loves to watch Japanese television. That’s why I thought it would be interesting to interview somebody who was actually on Japanese TV. I was surprised when I heard back from Yomiuri TV’s 25 year … [Read more...]

What I Learned About Learning Japanese From Spending 3 Weeks In Taiwan

My (friend's) wedding / (my) vacation time in Taiwan has come to a close, and while these three weeks have been a lot of fun, they've also been very educational as well. You see, I wanted to attempt to remember what it's … [Read more...]

Japanese, The Borrower Language Part 3: Why They Do It

Japanese is one of those languages that is seen as mysterious and exotic to many Westerners. It may seem that way, but if you've read Part 1 and Part 2 of my "Borrower Language" series, or if you are familiar with … [Read more...]

Japanese, the Borrower Language Part 2: Twisting Words

Want to read part 1 of this series? Read it here - Japanese, The Borrower Language part 1: Where the Japanese Language Came From. The phenomenon of language borrowing is in no way unique, but it seems to stand out more … [Read more...]

Playing With Words Japanese Style: Kotoba Asobi

Words words words! Tofugu has done various posts about various types of wordplay in the past, but I thought that I would contribute my own compilation of fun things that you can do with those (Japanese) sounds that make … [Read more...]

Japanese, The Borrower Language Part 1: Where The Japanese Language Came From

English loanwords in Japanese are often a source of amusement for native speakers of English learning Japanese as a second language. There’s so many of them, it seems like if you don’t know a word in Japanese, you can just … [Read more...]

Coming Soon And Codenamed “Kuma” – Advanced Japanese Study Materials

For the last month I've been working hard on advanced materials for TextFugu. During that time, some changes have happened in my mind, and one way or another (I'll explain in a second), it came to be that instead of an … [Read more...]