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Japanese language

Japanese language
Japanese (日本語, Nihongo?, [nihõŋɡo], [nihõŋŋo] ( )) is an East Asian language spoken by about 125 million speakers, primarily in Japan, where it is the national language. It is a member of the Japonic (or Japanese-Ryukyuan) language family, whose relation to other language groups, particularly to Korean and the suggested Altaic language family, is debated. Little is known of the language's prehistory, or when it first appeared in Japan. Chinese documents from the 3rd century recorded a few Japanese words, but substantial texts did not appear until the 8th century. History[edit] Prehistory[edit] A common ancestor of Japanese and Ryukyuan languages or dialects is thought[by whom?] Old Japanese[edit] Old Japanese is the oldest attested stage of the Japanese language. Due to these extra syllables, it has been hypothesized that Old Japanese's vowel system was larger than that of Modern Japanese – it perhaps contained up to eight vowels. Early Middle Japanese[edit] Late Middle Japanese[edit]

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Japanese_language

Related:  Demographics of Japan

Languages of Japan The oral languages spoken by the native peoples of the insular country of Japan at present and during recorded history belong to either of two primary phyla of human language: In addition to these two indigenous language families, there is Japanese Sign Language as well as significant minorities of ethnic Koreans and Chinese, who respectively constitute approximately 0.5% and 0.4% of the country's population and many of whom continue to speak their respective ethnic language in private contexts (see Zainichi Korean). There is also a notable history of use of Kanbun (Classical Chinese) as a language of literature and diplomacy in Japan, similar to the status of the Latin language in medieval Europe, which has left an indelible mark on the vocabulary of the Japanese language. Kanbun is a mandatory subject in the curricula of most Japanese secondary schools.

Hachijō dialects The small group of Hachijo or Hachijōjima dialects are perhaps the most divergent of Japanese. They are spoken on the southern Izu Islands south of Tokyo, Hachijō Island and the smaller Aogashima, as well as on the Daitō Islands of Okinawa Prefecture, which were settled from Hachijo in the Meiji period. Based on the criterion of mutual intelligibility, Hachijo may be considered a distinct Japonic language. Hachijo dialects retain ancient Eastern Japanese features, as recorded in the 8th-century Man'yōshū. Linguistics In the early 20th century Ferdinand de Saussure distinguished between the notions of langue and parole in his formulation of structural linguistics. According to him, parole is the specific utterance of speech, whereas langue refers to an abstract phenomenon that theoretically defines the principles and system of rules that govern a language.[9] This distinction resembles the one made by Noam Chomsky between competence and performance, where competence is individual's ideal knowledge of a language, while performance is the specific way in which it is used.[10] In classical Indian philosophy of language, the Sanskrit philosophers like Patanjali and Katyayana had distinguished between sphota (light) and dhvani (sound). In the late 20th century, French philosopher Jacques Derrida distinguished between the notions of speech and writing.[11]

Religion in Japan The Nachi Shrine is an ancient site of kami worship. Most Japanese do not exclusively identify themselves as adherents of a single religion; rather, they incorporate elements of various religions in a syncretic fashion[1] known as Shinbutsu shūgō (神仏習合, amalgamation of kami and buddhas?). Shinbutsu Shūgō officially ended with the Shinto and Buddhism Separation Order of 1886, but continues in practice. Shinto and Japanese Buddhism are therefore best understood not as two completely separate and competing faiths, but rather as a single, rather complex religious system.[2] Japan enjoys full religious freedom and minority religions such as Christianity, Islam, Hinduism and Sikhism are practiced.

Japanese dialects The dialects of the Japanese language fall into two primary clades, Eastern (including Tokyo) and Western (including Kyoto), with the dialects of Kyushu and Hachijō Island often distinguished as additional branches, the latter perhaps the most divergent of all. The Ryukyuan languages of Okinawa Prefecture and the southern islands of Kagoshima Prefecture form a separate branch of the Japonic family, and are not Japanese dialects. History[edit]

Brain Hacks ...For answer Holmes clapped the hat upon his head. It came right over the forehead and settled upon the bridge of his nose. "It is a question of cubic capacity, " said he; "a man with so large a brain must have something in it. " ... Ethnic issues in Japan Japan is facing cultural conflicts between ethnic minorities (including immigrants)[citation needed] and the resident Yamato Japanese. According to the Japanese Constitution, all citizens are equally important regardless of ethnic identity. At least one native people-group (the Ainu) has been formally recognized by the Japanese government. However, foreign nationals are sometimes restricted from certain services and activities. Demographic[edit] Foreigners in Japan in 2000 by citizenship.

Kagoshima dialect The Satsugū dialect (薩隅方言, Satsugū Hōgen?), often referred to as the Kagoshima dialect (鹿児島弁, Kagoshima-ben, Kagomma-ben?), is a group of dialects or dialect continuum of the Japanese language spoken mainly within the area of the former Ōsumi and Satsuma provinces now incorporated into the southwestern prefecture of Kagoshima. It may also be collectively referred to as the Satsuma dialect (薩摩方言? Satsuma Hōgen or 薩摩弁? Satsuma-ben), owing to both the prominence of the Satsuma Province and the region of the Satsuma Domain which spanned the former Japanese provinces of Satsuma, Ōsumi and the southwestern part of Hyūga. 30 Books I’m Glad I Read Before 30 - StumbleUpon In various ways, these 30 books convey some of the philosophy of how Angel and I live our lives. I honestly credit a fraction of who I am today to each title. Thus, they have indirectly influenced much of what I write about on this site. A medley of both fiction and nonfiction, these great reads challenged my internal status quo, opening my mind to new ideas and opportunities, and together they gave me a basic framework for living, loving, learning and working successfully. If you haven’t read these books yet, I highly recommend doing so.

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