To finish up, five Bilingual articles that offer insights into the Japanese language and culture:

  • What is “beautiful Japanese”? A word that sounds good rolling off the tongue? Or a phrase that lets people know you care? Eric Margolis takes readers through the terms Japanese speakers think of as utsukushii Nihongo. Even if you are a Japanese beginner, you may know many of them already.
  • Does Google Translate make foreign language learning unnecessary? Not quite, write Peter Backhaus and Ayana Yamanaka. Idioms and other turns of phrase are often taken literally when “smart” tech is left to make sense of things. That means translator jobs are safe for now, fingers crossed.
The reason Google Translate fails at Japanese | ABROAD IN JAPAN
The reason Google Translate fails at Japanese | ABROAD IN JAPAN
  • COVID-19 continues to infect the way Japanese is spoken in 2021. And much of the vocab has its roots in English, from “rebounds” and “dominoes” to our “life after” corona. To help you keep up, Haruka Murayama brings together some terms that have been popping up in Japanese conversations recently.
  • In response to stay-at-home advisories, job losses and market volatility, record numbers of individual investors have been taking advantage of online platforms to try their luck on the markets. Feeling lucky? Invest in your Japanese ability with Daniel Morales’ crash course in stock market vocab.
  • Commenting on a vote-buying scandal, Liberal Democratic Party bigwig Toshihiro Nikai said, “Tō to shite mo, tazan no ishi to shite, shikkari taiō shite-ikanakereba,” (The party must deal with this by letting it be an object lesson). What on earth did he mean? Tadasu Takahashi tries to get to the bottom of it, but even Japanese speakers are confused.