Study Meeting (JAP-CHI)

This meeting, everyone couldn’t come on time, so we decided to learn basic words and expressions quickly. Actually, we hardly gathered just on time I realized that we have different ways of thinking about time even if China and Japan are close with respect to geography and ethnic. It is natural for Japanese to be punctual especially about time, and I think it is our virtue. For example, I promised my friend we would meet at 11 am and if I would be 3 minutes late, it is good manners to send my friend messages beforehand so that my friend doesn’t need to worry anything. But this is too sensitive for Chinese and they are laid back for time, of course it depends on person though. This kind of problem often happens when you live in foreign countries and it’s not first time for me. I think every time you have doubt about other’s attitude, it is important to understand the culture and national personality because it would be possibly just culture difference, not their own personality.

In learning session, I learned how to introduce myself- name, home country, age, study field, hobby and personality- in Chinese. Surprising thing there was that we use similar letters but a little different when we express word. For instance, introducing myself is 自己紹介 in Japanese and 自我介紹 in Chinese. I can understand this Chinese version reading it but it was confusing point for me. In addition, 趣味 is hobby in Japanese but in Chinese it become different meaning, which means interesting things. There are a lot of these kinds of words between Chinese and Japanese, here is more examples;

◆女装
Japanese- Man dress up as a woman
Chinese- Clothes for woman

◆床
Japanese- Floor
Chinese- Bed

◆真面目
Japanese- Faithful, serious
Chinese- Real character

When I learn it, I should care about differences of meaning like that and also when I teach Japanese language to Chinese people at the same time.

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