Sunday, June 7, 2009

1. Introduction to Japan

From this time I'll present my records "Introduction to Japan" in this blog.

Below is the script of this record.


Hello, I'm uji. I'm giving an Introduction to Japan for Americans, Canadians or other non-Japanese people who want to visit Japan. Today's topic is general information about Japan for beginners. I'll talk details of Japan next time.

Introduce myself

Before the talk, I'll introduce myself. I'm a Japanese programmer. I'm learning English to go to an American graduate university. I had been in Japan since my birth until this spring, and now I live in Vancouver, Canada.


First of all, I'll talk about Japanese geography. Look at this figure. Japan consists of 4 major islands and other smaller islands. The northwest island is Hokkaido: North Ocean Route, the second is Honshu: Main State, the third is Shikoku: Four Countries, and the last is Kyushu: Nine States.

There are two major cities. The primary one is the capital Tokyo: East Capital. Tokyo is in an area called Kanto: Eastern from Barrier. The other city is Osaka: Big Slope. Osaka is in an area called Kansai: Western from Barrier. Kansai also includes two popular cities for visitors. One is Kyoto: Capital Capital, the former capital about a thousand years ago, and the other is Nara: Very Good, the capital before Kyoto. I was born in Nara. If you come to Japan, you will arrive at Narita Airport in Kanto or Kansai Airport in Kansai.


Second, I'll talk about the Language of Japan. It consists of Hiragana, Katakana and Kanji. We use numbers with Kanji or regular numbers, but they both are pronounced in Japanese. Ichi, Ni, San, not one, two three.

Some words have the same pronunciation as other different words. We distinguish them by pitch and accent. For example, Hashi is a bridge, Hashi is a margin or an edge, Hashi is chopsticks.


The names of Japanese people or places almost always consists of kanji, but some include hiragana, and sometimes katakana very rarely. My name is all kanji; Ujihisa Tatsuhiro. Note that in Japan we use our last names first, and our first names last. We don't have middle names. A person who doesn't have kanji for their name, for instance an American person, uses katakana. When using katakana you can say your first name first, and your last name last. If your name is Barack Obama, you spell baraku obama in katakana. Between the first name and the last name, you need to write a dot.


This is the end of the first Introduction to Japan. If you have a question or a suggestion about this info, feel free to tell me. Thank you.