Japanese Language and "Characters": From the Perspective of Teaching Japanese as a Foreign Language
Keywords:Japanese learners, "role language", "speaker’s character", first person pronouns, sentence ending expressions
This paper introduces current status of "role language" and the "speaker's character" and their applications in Japanese teaching materials. Besides it studies the knowledge of Russian learners of Japanese and carefully examines their knowledge of four typical kinds of "role language" in Japanese anime and manga by using a questionnaire and follow-up interviews. From the results of the textbook research, the following two things are revealed; (a) first person pronouns except for watashi are rarely used, (b) there is not enough explanations about different "speaker's characters" in detail. Furthermore, findings of the questionnaire show that some of the learners who have the same impression of the characters as Japanese native speakers, wrongly connect a certain "role language" to illustrations of a character, and results of as much as three kinds of "role language" have a low positive correlation with the learners' results of the Japanese Language Proficiency Test. Results also reveal that all four kinds of "role language" have no correlation with other factors, such as student's duration of learning Japanese, or frequency of the use of Japanese outside the classroom.
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Copyright (c) 2015 Yukiko Shukuri
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