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Last year, after a rash of movies centered around Japanese language and culture were released (Kill Bill 1&2, Last Samurai, Lost in Translation and others) I realized I couldn't get enough of the Japanese language...such beautiful sounds! As a graduate student, I don't have hardly any time to do "fun" things for myself, but I bought a set of "Learn Japanese in Your Car" cds that I can play driving around, on the stereo or on my PC. With every word or phrase I learn, I get so excited. My whole life, I've been awed and inspired by eastern culture and have applied much of it to my own life. Learning Japanese is just one more step.

Do any of you know of any tools or materials I could use in learning Japanese? How about Japanese movies that you like? (We have Spirited Away and Millenium Actress, but that's it. And not really into much anime just by ignorance) The ideal thing would be to know someone who speaks the language fluently and to talk to them as often as possible, but I just don't have that opportunity right now. :(

What foreign languages do you all speak??
 

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Czech, English. And I understand Slovakian (I can read a book, watch a movie...). Slovakian is very close to Czech. We understand them and they understand us. I can't speak Slovakian.

I also studied Spanish for 4 years, Italian for 1 year and German for 2 years. :) I always enjoyed studying other languages. It's so much fun!
 

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I am fluent in English and French. My Italian, Japanese and Catalan (the language of Barcelona) are good enough to ask for directions or order food in restaurants. I took a year and a half of ancient Greek in college and I am currently studying (very informally) Hebrew.
 

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I think I've seen computer programs on CD for learning foreign language. That way instead of just reading or just listening to the words, you can see and hear at the same time. I'm not sure where I saw it though... but it seems really helpful.

Side note- my brother loves anime and "learned" how to speak japanese through the cartoons, but he really only knows a few words. I'm sad to say but it all sounds the same to me :oops:
 

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Lolakitty, it is a great idea to try to find Japanese speakers so you can practice, and they can correct your pronounciation. That's the best way to learn - we practice on our friends all the time, and they in turn practice their English on us.

I can't think of any movies that we've seen lately, but I'll add them when I remember. I also thought Japanese sounded so lovely, even the train announcers sounded lovely.

I speak English, Spanish, French, Mandarin and Cantonese. Grew up speaking British English and pidgin Creole (Jamaican). Re-learning ASL so I can sign with Pamela, and learning Farsi. Know a lot of operatic Italian, although how useful is up for debate, LOL. I learned enough Japanese and German to get around in the cities I visited.

Languages are wonderful. Most of the people we know speak 3 or more languages fluently. In one city we visited, *everyone* spoke 5 or 6 different languages.
 

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I want to learn German, but I'm too busy to try myself. I have a bunch of books and CDs too. They always insist on teaching you as a tourist. :roll:

Czech would be cool as would any Slavic language, but I hear it's very difficult to learn.
 

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I speak English, of course, and Spanish, and like SuperKitties, I know a lot of operatic Italian, but that is from experience and having studied Latin for four years. Of course, that makes all of the Romantic languages easier. I wish I could live in Spain of Mexico so that I could become completely fluent in Spanish. Oh, I used to know quite a bit of sign language, but I don't use it often now.
 

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I know enough American Sign Language to carry on a good conversation, enough Romanian to survive in Timişoara, and enough Spanish to introduce myself and ask where the bathroom is :lol: I'm going to be learning a little Hindi for my trip to India next summer, too :D
 

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I speak English and understand almost all Spanish, although I don't speak it very well!!! Oh, and I'm Mexican, so its pretty sad. :lol: When it comes to speaking Spanish, I can't remember the words for certain things and end up saying some things in English.

I would love to learn Japanese, but it seems so hard. Like if you dont stress a certain word correctly, it turns into a different one!
 

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Discussion Starter #15
jonsgirl said:
I speak English and understand almost all Spanish, although I don't speak it very well!!! Oh, and I'm Mexican, so its pretty sad. :lol: When it comes to speaking Spanish, I can't remember the words for certain things and end up saying some things in English.

I would love to learn Japanese, but it seems so hard. Like if you dont stress a certain word correctly, it turns into a different one!
HA! AT LAST!!...I've found someone else!! I am half Mexican (mother's Mexican, father's family from England) and am VERY close to my mother's side of the family and still can't speak much Spanish at all!! I took 4 years of it and still can't carry on a simple conversation. It's sad, I know. But, my family all insists on speaking English. My mom and her siblings were the only Mexicans in their school when a missionary brought them to Florida, so the teachers wouldn't let them speak Spanish because they worried about what they were saying to each other. So, over time, my mom just fell out of practice and adopted English once and for all. Even when my grandparents (or anyone else, for that matter) speak Spanish to her, she always answers back in English.

Anyway, I am surprised at how many people know other languages! How wonderful.

Superkitties: you remind me of Gwyneth Paltrow's character in "Perfect Murder." She works for the UN, I think...I always wanted to be like that! Knowing so many languages that you can mingle with so many different people of different cultures! WOW! How amazing.
 

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I'm fluent in English and Korean (I was born here, but my grandmother lived with me when I was younger so I had the benefit of learning my native language).

I learned Spanish in middle - high school. Picked up Japanese in high school. I know enough to get around, but most of my learned-foreign language skills are terribly rusty from disuse now.
 
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