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Doing things bass-aackwards

I wonder if that’s actually the proper way to type that?


As part of the program (Master’s in History; 歷史所,碩士班) and the topic (Japanese Occupation Period in Taiwan; 日治時代) that I am currently studying, I am currently and will have to deal with many Japanese academic articles as well as contemporary pieces (government documents, newspapers, etc). Recently, I had to read and present an article for my seminar class (殖民政策研究) that was completely in Japanese( 近藤正己《総力戦と台湾‧日本植民地崩壊の硏究》1996,東京都,刀水書房。弟228-252頁。 )which was quite a challenge.

My current level of Japanese is still very basic; what I know is from my three years in high school and college of Japanese study. Even that has waned since I stopped studying in 2006. To get through this article in the one week I had to prepare, I was left with just cruising through as much of the kanji I knew from Chinese, with some minor look-ups in my Nintendo DS dictionary. I got through it, and fairly well it seems as the professor noted I caught the core of the article.

So I’m in an interesting situation. I’ve starting learning Japanese almost entirely backwards. Often people start with the kana systems, break into kanji, then more onto sentences (such as put forth by Katz at AJATT). Due to the requirements of my major, I’m working entirely opposite. I wonder what the results will be?

At any rate, in order to combat this, I’m currently going through Tae Kim’s Japanese Guide To Learning Japanese and I picked up a Japanese grammar book explained through Chinese.

My presentation is below the break, complete with mistyped characters as well!






l 協議會員徐清吉、郭水潭、鄭國湞、吳新榮之意見是一致,要把正廳改善了,所以在1938年,透過佳里興部落自治振興會「敬神思想之普及」,積極地行動他們的計劃。

l 他們把觀音佛祖像、普提菩薩、佛法之連句的飾換成「御真影」、「日章旗」、跟「教育勅語」。

l 各家庭有「天照大御神」跟祖先崇拜當指導。

l 當時,部落的「天麻奉齋」普及率是95%,「神棚設置」的普及率是92%。

l 住宅的改善:


l 當然改善一般人的生活品質,但是日本生活樣式侵入了台灣;破壞當地的傳統。


l 當時日文在台灣稱為「國語」,學校、警察、政府機關,等等。

l 禁止了台語,但大部分的學生在學校用國語,在家用台語。

l 總督府透過:






l 特別注意的,東京帝國大學留學生來台灣時,不少有英文、德文,還有中國大陸留學生,大開「台灣新文學運動」。另外,中國大陸留學生讓台灣人再學「中國百語」。


l 中國抗日戰爭之後,改姓名的運動算是一種「戰時政策」,有兩個目標:


l 台灣人已對漢人姓名習慣了,當時「對岸」的關係繼續保留這個習慣。

l 『台灣私法』裡面說不要保留皆「支那傳來」的姓;作出新的(日本樣式)姓。

l 改姓名的對決就在家庭結確認、先祖對話、地域的同姓者的一體性。改姓名破壞地緣、血緣的關係。譬如:同一祖先的父系血緣的子孫會失他們的家庭傳統背景。

l 在1930年,總督府開始改變台灣傳統的祭祀方法;比如說:1934年祭祀公業[2]的事業報告及收支決算報告書用日文寫出來的,至於1941年3月的「昭告正成祖並歷代宗公」,內容表跟祖先的連絡語言就是日文的,沒有另語言。


l 結果:傳統先祖崇拜被日本的信仰侵入了。

l 台灣傳統春節[3]廢止了。

l 但是,這些政策碰到強烈抗,一點都不是順利,大部分的人要保持他們傳統特名字,姓。



[2] 祭祀公業指「前清或日據時期先民離鄉背井之際,為懷念其原鄉祖先,而由子孫集資購置田產,以其收益作為祖先祭祀時之備辦及聚餐費用,其意義是使祖先有「血食」,後代子孫聚集「吃祖」,充分顯示當時台灣先民社會慎終追遠、尊祖敬宗優良傳統美德。」內政部民政司網站

[3] 日語稱為「旧正月」

4 thoughts on “Doing things bass-aackwards”

  1. So this is much like what the ordinary Chinese experience would be like when setting out to learn Japanese then. Interesting that you’ve studied Japanese both from a Western beginning and a Chinese beginning – won’t be too many people who could say that!

    1. It’s definitely slightly mind boggling! But, everything Khatz has said about learning the Kanji as important holds true! But my problem is for those words that don’t have kanji, or often don’t use it. With those, I find it difficult to get a definition of (either it’s a homophone or I can’t find one that fits the context–as I’ve built it up–in my mind).

  2. There was a graduate student whose research was focused on China in one of my Japanese classes. He was from Israel, I think, and spoke fluent Chinese, but just like you he had trouble with the non-Kanji aspects of Japanese.

    One of the main issues he had when we were in class together was his accent and speaking ability—I had nothing against the guy, but his accent was terrible and was often difficult to understand.

    You have a lot more Japanese experience than he did, but practicing out loud will probably be really helpful considering your background. Nonetheless, you’re in a better place than most—that can only be a good thing!

    1. Thanks for the comment! Sorry for the long reply, though. Checked out your blog, too, seemed really interesting, I’ll keep up with it.

      Actually my pronunciation in both would use some work! I am interested to kind of “start over” in Japanese, as it were, and try out a lot of the new language learning methods I’ve picked up. Now, I can look and think Japanese seems relatively easier to pronounce after having gone through the rigors of Chinese.

      Sadly, I’ve had my fair share of classmates with bad accents too, and ironically, they don’t seem to mind, even after the teacher has repeatedly tried to correct them or has made comments about keeping an eye on how they speak. From there, a sort of ‘fossilization’ occurs and they’re permanently stuck in the way they speak, as it’s very hard for them to change it later. It’s something everyone needs to keep an eye out for!

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