national

Japanese language study becoming popular in China, Indonesia

18 Comments

The number of people studing Japanese is increasing rapidly in China and Indonesia, the Japan Foundation said Wednesday. According to the results of a foundation survey taken every four years, Japanese is taught in 136 countries to about 3,980,000 students.

The number of Japanese learners increased in China the most, up 26.5% since 2009, making China the top country for learning Japanese for the first time, TV Asahi reported. Indonesia ranked second, up 21.8% since 2009.

The Japan Foundation said many Chinese and Indonesians are learning Japanese because they are interested in Japanese culture, such as anime and manga. Others learn Japanese because it's beneficial to their future career, the foundation said.

Meanwhile, the number of students of Japanese in South Korea, which ranked No. 1 in the survey for many years, has dropped by 21.8% since 2009 and ranked No. 3 this year.

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18 Comments
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Remember the battle of the bulge? The Chinese are training spies and getting ready for an invasion.

2 ( +4 / -2 )

@Disillusioned You can rest in peace. Ever since last September, no one is interested in the Japanese language now. The new wave is Korean. Korean stars, Korean TV serials, Korean cars, Korean travels, Korean smartphones etc. English, Spanish, German and Russian language centers are sprouting all over China, including the 2nd and 3rd tier cities. This report compares to 2009, not 2012!

-8 ( +1 / -9 )

There are only 1,046,490 Chinese learning Japanese in China in 2012? Compared to 827,171 in China in 2009? How accurate is Japan Foundation's survey? (I got these numbers from Japan Foundation's website)

That can't be right. That number should be significantly higher due to higher income and the emergence of so many educational/language franchise schools in China. In many cities, the study of a second language is mandatory in many schools.

Meaning, students must choose a foreign language in order to graduate even secondary school/high school. Or like many, who pay for language studies in one of the many language schools all across China.

I think that number by Japan Foundation is a bit low. The last time I read a report somewhere in the SCMP is that more than 60 million Chinese students are studying English as a second language. Not counting adults.

If Japan Foundation's number is correct, then its not a good number since you have to compare between which foreign languages these Chinese students are studying in to find out if China is interested in your language and if your influence is growing on them.

The increase in number only means that more schools are offering a second language and the Chinese are getting richer so they can afford to learn a second language. But which second language is getting the fastest growth should be the topic.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

They know Japan's population is declining and the country is beautiful. At some point the Japanese Government will have to bring in more foreigners just to keep things running. 25 years from now Japan is going to be a very different place unless people start procreating more.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

Dana,

But if you do bring others in, there will be the inescapable cultural clash. And if that can't be properly controlled, it could get ugly.

I think Japanese should just "procreate" and exercise more in the bedrooms and pump out more babies. Why depend on others when you can do it on your own? If raising a baby is expensive for you, what makes you think it won't be expensive for the foreigners?

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

@highball7: multiculturalism isn't bad at all. It's richness. I live in Europe, and even if integration of immigrants is difficult, I still support multiculturalism.

@Asian2013: I'm not the kind of person who generalizes, but...are you Korean? Don't you think that you are acting in a too nationalistic way? China, France, Spain, Italy, etc., all these countries have millions of turists every year, way more than South Korea. You are acting like if South Korea was the centre of the universe, just because K-drama and k-music are popular in Asia (not so much in the rest of the world...for sure, not in Europe).

1 ( +1 / -0 )

@alex80. My nation is thousands of miles away from Korea and I understand no Korean. Do I love Korea? No. I have been living in China for many years and am just telling what I see. In fact I first visited Japan in 1984 and fell in live with the country. I learned Japanese and sang Japanese songs especially Enka. After that I visited Japan many times and found the people very well behaved. I found Japan very clean and was amazed with the shopping at the Osaka station. Recently however, I begin to find Japanese politicians very disgusting. Unfortunately, they are very supported. I thus slowly changed my thinking towards Japan and Japanese. At least I once loved Japan. I have never loved Korea at all!

2 ( +3 / -1 )

The new wave is Korean

Whenever I hear Korean it has such similar sounds and rythms to Japanese that I subconciously start to try listening in Japanese and get completely confused. Not like Mandarin which sounds like you've got your teeth wired together, or Cantonese which sounds like people arguing.

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

@Asian2013: well I guess you were describing the situation in China, not around the world. If it's like that, ok. I guess you are right and in China Korean pop culture is very popular, while Japanese culture is hated by many people (like in South Korea). I'm here because I like Japan. If we talk about politicians, I dislike politicians of any country, included politicians of my own country.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Just doubt the survey. How they are willing to learn ur language when they hate you.

By the way, Japan language and culture were emrged by Chinese and a littile local. Japan never appreciates the source of its civilization due to lack of moral.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

The Chinese in China do not hate Japan. They just hate Japanese politicians constant flip flop on history. One moment they please you and say sorry and the next moment, they deny everything. The Japanese politicians constantly undo and destroy the hard work put in by Japanese businesses. Continue at this rate and Japanese trade with China will be reduced to generic products like and brandless screens and engines and materials.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

The Chinese in China do not hate Japan. They just hate Japanese politicians constant flip flop on history. One moment they please you and say sorry and the next moment, they deny everything. The Japanese politicians constantly undo and destroy the hard work put in by Japanese businesses.

Yes, it's unfortunate that it if weren't for these delusional, overconfident right-wing politicians, then learning Japanese and Japanese culture would be much more popular. All these politicians boast about how Japan is "well liked" by all the other Asian countries, but ironically they are the ones who are making people more ambivalent toward how they feel about Japan.

This reveals another weakness of the Japanese government... that it does not have a "center", therefore nobody is responsible for anything. The politicians can say anything and nobody is there to restrain them. Nobody has an ultimate "plan" for Japan, like say having better relations with China. So one diplomat may express how he wishes to have better relations with China, while another local politician may say otherwise. But ultimately neither represent where Japan is headed, because no such agreement exist in the first place!

-4 ( +0 / -4 )

The Chinese in China do not hate Japan. They just hate Japanese politicians constant flip flop on history. One moment they please you and say sorry and the next moment, they deny everything. The Japanese politicians constantly undo and destroy the hard work put in by Japanese businesses. Continue at this rate and Japanese trade with China will be reduced to generic products like and brandless screens and engines and materials.

Yes. Those are very good reasons to plunder and destroy Japanese business establishments in China. (sarcasm)

0 ( +2 / -2 )

Nigelboy, didn't right wing Japanese destroy those Chinese and Korean businesses, primarily 100yen stores just a few years back? Or the false rumors spread by right wingers and mass media causing the deaths of tens of thousands immigrants to Japan back in the 60s and 70s?

Everytime there is an earthquake, minorities' rights get trampled. How is that fair to them and is there a good reason to subjugate them in such prejudicial and intolerable fashion?

And Chinese in China do hate Japan. According the the newest Pew studies, its on their front page on their website. Scroll down and you will see 74% Chinese hate/dislike Japan, over 85% Korean hate/dislike Japan. These are your neighbors, can you imagine both Canada and Mexico hating the US in such fashion? What do you think US will do to rectify this? What will Japan do?

Keep telling yourself you are superior, your are correct and everyone else is wrong won't get anything done when there IS reasonable doubts and there are evidence of such actions that do actually harm the feelings between all you people. If you are my neighbor, a permanent one no less since neither of us can move. And I keep doing the things that irritate, hurt/harm your feelings year after year knowing that I had been in the wrong in the past and the action that I am taking will remind you of that past - constantly. How would you feel about it? Are you going to like me or hate/dislike me?

This is just common sense and basic human emotions. Japan has the right to ignore and reject but it ought not to for the benefit of your own future. When there comes a time that you are in need of your neighbors, you might not get it. Keep in mind Japan is natural disaster prone. When your neighbors all hate/dislike you, the likelihood that they will come to your aid diminishes.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Nigelboy, didn't right wing Japanese destroy those Chinese and Korean businesses, primarily 100yen stores just a few years back? Or the false rumors spread by right wingers and mass media causing the deaths of tens of thousands immigrants to Japan back in the 60s and 70s?

Perhaps you could link them to me.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

Asian are known as peaceful people and the history proof this statement. In my opinion, increasing relations between Asian could open more gates such as opening bridge rail trains between these countries.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Asian2013Jul. 11, 2013 - 10:59AM JST

@Disillusioned You can rest in peace. Ever since last September, no one is interested in the Japanese language now. The new wave is Korean. Korean stars, Korean TV serials, Korean cars, Korean travels, Korean smartphones etc. English, Spanish, German and Russian language centers are sprouting all over China, including the 2nd and 3rd tier cities. This report compares to 2009, not 2012!

Huh? I live in a place where there are actually lots of Korean immigrants, and Korean culture is a non-factor compared to the influence of some other countries, neither is Russian. I have never seen a Korean TV show, and the only Korean music I have seen or heard is some clown on some YouTube video that was a brief sensation. Lots of Korean restaurants here, all patronized by Koreans; ditto for the Korean food stores. On the other hand Japanese food is very popular and so is Japanese manga, Japanese cars and electronics (which are judged as superior to Korean).

Perhaps you are not aware there is a whole world outside of Korea and China. I am afraid you overestimate Korean influence, at least in North America. Wishful thinking, perhaps?

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

@Realist The context here is China and my note is about events in China. How on earth did N. America get into play? I really don't care what N Americans like. But that's another story.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

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