Japanese Reading & Listening Practice and Translations
One of the best ways to learn a language is to listen to a native speaker while you read along with a transcript. Polyglots who speak loads of languages generally recommend this as one of the fastest ways to improve. Indeed multilingualist Steve Kaufmann’s Linq platform is based almost wholly this concept. So Japanoscope Japanese readings and translations offer a convenient collection of this content with native readings by native Japanese speakers.
But if you’re going to learn a language, then you may as well learn something about the world or life at large at the same time. Otherwise, what’s the point? So we search out the deep stuff, texts that teach you something useful, that you can use in your life, or that highlight something uniquely interesting about Japanese culture. Then we record, transcribe and translate into English. We post weekly translations and present them on Youtube, audio podcast and text. Sources come from all over the shop – Japanese books, social media posts, poems, lyrics, signage, letters, official documents, speeches, interviews, manifestos etc. We have a particular interest in Japanese music and songs, and we produce translated performances of Japanese songs in English.
If you’re like us, on the endless path of learning Japanese, looking for Japanese reading practice or Japanese listening practice, and you want materials that go beyond cherry blossoms and samurai swords to provide a genuine insite into lived culture, then please subscribe to the podcast and Youtube channel or click on individual articles below.
You can also find a full list of our favourite Japanese language learning resources here.
Recent Japanese Learning Materials
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My favorite one piece quotes in Japanese and English, and what they can teach us about life. I’ve divided these quotes into themse such as Purpose, friendship, strength, luck etc.
In this post, I go through a bunch of examples of how to say “shut up” in Japanese – from rude to more polite and everything in between. I’ve also included several examples from real anime and manga.
The word “urusai” in Japanese is a way to say that someone or something is being noisy or disruptive. If someone says it directly to another person, the implication is that they are telling them to “be quiet”, so it is often translated as “shut up” in English (I’ve done a whole post about how to say shut up in Japanese). This is generally a fair translation, but not a literal one, because if you say to someone “urusai” you are literally saying “(you’re) noisy”. But the word urusai is actually very interesting because it has quite a few different,
There are several Japanese words for stop that have worked their way into global popular culture in recent years. Ain’t the internet a wonderful place? People yelling at each other to “stop” doesn’t really happen that often in real life, but it happens a lot in anime. So with the rise of the popularity of Japanese animation in recent years, Japanese words for stop, like yamete, yamete kudasai and yamero have also, kinda weirdly, entered into the international lexicon. But there are a lot of other words to describe the idea of stop in Japanese, so I’ll take a look
In one of the strange quirks of mass-online culture, the Japanese word “Yamero” came to be widely used outside of Japan in the mid 2010s, along with “yamete kudasai” which I’ve done explained the meaning of in the past. People who are into anime are also often familiar with the yamero from that medium. I’ll go into that more below, but let’s start with a look at the word from a straight, language perspective first. What is the meaning of “Yamero”? Yamero literally means “stop it!”. It is often used in the sense of telling someone to stop doing something,
A complete guide of how to say “no problem” in Japanese in a variety of contexts. Includes explanations and 50+ examples of “no problem” Japanese equivalents.
Near Death Note Quotes in new translation from japanese with full discussion of meanings.
New translations and explanations of L quotes from Death Note.
New translations from the Japanese of Light Yagami quotes from Death Note. Hopefully these new renderings of Yagami light’s words give a clearer picture of what Yagami, and by extension, Death Note’s Author was trying to say.
Previously, I’ve written about the 20 most popular Christmas songs as voted by Japanese people. Some of these songs I like, some I don’t so I thought it would be good put together my list of my own top 10 japanese Christmas songs. Some of them are mega hits. Some of them are a little bit more niche. They generally, once again, reflect the Japanese perspective as Christmas being mostly about love between couples. To understand the context for these songs, take a blood at my history of Japanese Christmas or Japanese Christmas today articles. 1. “Your Lover Is Your
The word “okay” is used pretty often as a loan word in Japanese. But they tend to use it in a different way. Or, at least, in only one of the very many ways we use it in English. When Japanese people say “Ok”, it is almost always used as an answer to a question to mean “yes”. Or in the sense of “all done” as in 山を登ったらオッケーです yama o nobottara desu。 ”Once we climb the mountain, that will be that.” So, you have to be careful using the word as an English speaker talking in Japanese. “Ok” isn’t “OK”,
How to Say Coffee in Japanese? The word for “coffee” in Japanese is “コーヒー kōhii”. To say it so people understand it in Japan, you’ve really got to pay attention to all those extending lines that tell you to drag out the sounds of both “ko” and “hii“. Coffee is something that shouldn’t be rushed, right? This is true of its pronunciation in Japan also! Read on, oxidental coffee enthusiasts. Where does the Japanese pronunciation of the word come from? Kohii, is derived from the Dutch word “koffie”. This makes sense, as the bitter brown stuff had been brought to
Japanese language has a lot of tongue twisters. Called “早口言葉 hayakuchi kotoba” in Japanese, we are blessed with a wealth of words for us to do vocal gymnastics with. Beyond being just fun to say, some of them are close to also being proverbs or aphorisms, and simultaneously provide little life lessons, insights or thoughts to focus the mind. Some of them even come off as being quite close to being new-age affirmations, such as: “四百四病で死なぬ信心の力 shihyakushibyō de shinanu shinjin no chikara” which translates as, “The power of a devotion that does not die through the 404 illnesses”. They really
Who says that manga can’t teach you life lessons? The character of Monkey D. Luffy in One Piece has a habit of coming out with surprisingly wise one-liners, observations and snippets of wisdom. His single-pointed devotion to a purpose. His naive-to-the-point-of-endearment purity. His unwavering belief in himself and unshakeable commitment to all those who have joined his cause. These things are inspirational. Even his devotion to his old straw hat says something about how we can use symbols to keep us on track in life. If you’re interested in seeing some anime quotes that represent the absolute flip side of
Is there such a thing as a cool kanji tattoo? Can Chinese character ink be hip? Can Japanese lettering tattoos be good on a gaijin? These are the questions we tried to answer in this discussion between a native English speaker, and a native Japnese speaker. Don’t fall in to the trap of getting any of these bad kanji tattoos, also see this post on Japanese tattoo words Transcript below. I’m Peter. ピーターです。 Ai. Hello. アイです。こんにちは。 And today we’re going to talk about 今日は、漢字タトゥーが格好いいのか、 whether we think that Kanji tattoos 格好よくないのか are cool or uncool. についてお話します。 I guess we’re talking
I had a chat with my friend Ai about what we thought were our top 10 Kanji fails. The transcript of our talk is outlined below, along with the images we talked about. We tried not to “dig the boot in” too much into any of these people and their Chinese character tattoos. Hopefully, this perspective of a native Japanese speaker and a Japanese-speaking native English speaker on kanji tattoos is interesting. Hopefully it gives some ideas of the dangers of getting a tattoo using Japnese lettering and what to avoid. And it’s not like don’t ever like kanji tats.
Japanese Folklore & Shinto Mythology in Anime – (Talking in Japanese & English) 神道と民話とアニメの話し（日本語と英語)
A look at the common Japanese mythology in anime, with a focus on Shinto and Buddhism.
A look at some of the more sexist lyrics of Yasushi Akimoto.
Talking in English & Japanese About The Naked Director, The Real Kaoru Kuroki And Japanese Sexuality
A chat in Japanese & English with Ai Yamamoto about The Naked Director, Kuroki Kaoru & Japanese Sexuality.
https://youtu.be/Ziw85qWQ214 Cornelius & The Olympics So you may have heard about how the composer for the 2020 Tokyo Olympics was forced to resign. He’s pretty well known in Japan for his work with Flipper’s Guitar, and outside of Japan for his work under the name of Cornelius. I was personally pretty shocked when I read the comments that led to his resignation, as I’ve listened to his music for quite a few years now, and been to see him play live before. From the way it was being reported, that he had been sacked for some comments about bullying he
Language Learning Program Reviews
My personal experience of using Pimsleur Japanese. Screen shots, things I noticed and liked or didn’t like. Where to buy Pimsleur cheap, if it’s your thing, and alternate language programs if it’s not.
My personal experiences of using Japanese Pod 101 as a long time Japanese learner. Includes discount codes and free resource pack link.