torachan: scott pilgrim pouting (scott pilgrim - pout)
Title: Nihonjin no Shiranai Nihongo 2
Author: Umino Nagiko & Hebizou
Number of Volumes: 1
My Rating: 5/5

This is (obviously) the sequel to the hilarious and informative Nihonjin no Shiranai Nihongo, an essay manga by a Japanese teacher who teaches Japanese to foreigners in Japan. It's pretty much just more of the same: annecdotes about her students and about differences between Japan and other countries, as well as explaining linguistic origins and neat stuff like that.

There is currently a drama "based" on this manga, but the drama is pretty much not at all like the manga in any way. (I am watching the drama and will post my thoughts when it's finished airing, but eh. It embodies so much of what I hate about the current trend in manga-based dramas it's not even funny.)
torachan: (Default)
This was absolutely hilarious. And educational. The title means "The Japanese the Japanese Don't Know", and it's a collection of stories about a teacher of Japanese in Japan and her students, what sort of questions they ask, what sort of mistakes they make, etc. There's also a lot of interesting background on the Japanese language, like where certain words came from and such. I was familiar with some of that, but a lot of it was new to me. For example, masu/desu is now standard Japanese, but it used to be geisha-speak. Men came to the capital, heard geisha speaking that way, and took it home and spread it, thinking it was the way everyone in the capital spoke. There was also a lot about keigo, and how even Japanese people get it wrong a lot.


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