© by James W. Heisig. As the title suggests, the present book has been prepared as a companion volume to Remembering the Kanji: A Complete Course on How Not to Forget the Meaning and WItting of Japanese Characters. It presumes that the material covered in the first book has. Remembering the Kanji vol. 2. A Systematic Guide to. Reading Japanese Characters. James W. Heisig fourth edition. University of Hawai'i Press honolulu . Characters and readings from "Remembering the Kanji 2: A systematic guide to reading Japanese characters " by James Heisig. Completion of "Remembering.
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Hello, I finished to study the 1st volume of the book remembering I'm afraid is only the amount of kanji shown in the sample pdf online. Kanji Master Vol.3 Level 2, Kanji ''Super Kanji , the effective way'' Remembering the Kanji: A Systematic Guide to Reading Japanese Characters. I'm aware that RTK 2 simply takes the established Kanji from 1 and teaches the readings. RTK 3 does both--it introduces new Kanji in the vein.
Another thirty percent of the new kanji belong to groups with one exception or to mixed groups in which the signal primitives have two readings. The remaining characters are organized fi rst according to readings that can be intuited from the meaning or dominant primitive element, and then according to useful compound terms.
Six indexes include hand-drawn samples of the new characters introduced and cumulative lists of the key words and primitive meanings, and of the Chinese and Japanese pronunciations, that appear in all 3 volumes of the series. James W. Tanya Sienko spent ten years working for the Japanese government and Japanese industry.
After a period at the Warburg Institute in London, she returned to the U. Barcelona: Herder Edi- torial, Die Kanji lernen und behalten 1. Bedeutung und Schreib weise der japanischen Schrift zeichen with Robert Rauther. Japanese Readings Index 5. It presumes that the material covered in the first book has already been mastered and concentrates exclusively on the pronunciation of the Japanese characters. Those who approached the study of the kanji in a different manner may find what is in these pages of some use, but it has not been designed with them in mind.
As I explained in the Introduction to the former volume, if it is the student's goal to acquire proficiency in using the Japanese writing system, the entire set of "general-use characters" 'm '1'l1llll. To insist on studying them in the order of importance or frequency generally followed in Japanese schools is pointless if some other order is more effective as a means to that final goal. A moment's reflection on the matter is enough to dispose of the common bias that the methods employed by those who come co Japanese as a foreign language should mirror the methods used by the Japanese themselves to learn how to read and write.
Accumulated experience and education-and in most cases an energetic impatience with one's own ignorance-distinguish the older student too radically from Japanese school children to permit basic study habits to be taken over with only cosmetic changes. Perhaps the single greatest obstacle to taking full advantage of one's privileged position as an adult foreigner is a healthy fear of imposing alien systems on Japanese language structures.
But to impose a system on ways of learning a language does not necessarily mean to impose a system on the language itself. To miss this distinction is to risk condemning oneself to the worst sorts of inefficiency for the worst sorts of reasons. Obviously the simplest way to learn Japanese is as the Japanese themselves do: The simplest way, alas, is also the most time-consuming and frustrating, By adding a bit of organized complexity to one's study investments, the same level of proficiency can be gained in a fraction of the time.
This was demonstrated in the first volume as far as the meaning and writing of the characters are concerned. That is the subject of this book. The earlier volume was described as a "complete course"; the present volume is offered as a "guide.
While both books are intended to be self-taught and allow individual readers to progress at their own pace, the former traced out a path step by step, in a clearly defined order.
Here, however. In fact the only thing ironclad about tbe method is the assumption tbat the student already knows what the characters mean and how they are written. Without that knowledge, the systematization becomes all but opaque. In any event, it is important to gain some understanding of how the book as a whole is laid out before deciding how best to make use of it.
The book falls into two parts of wildly disproportionate length. This should not give the impression that the on readings themselves are so much more difficult than the kun readings, but only that their systematization requires much more attention.
What is more, the method followed in Chapter 11 is closer to that followed in Vol. I and can thus be treated in relatively short shrift. One of the chief reasons for frustration with the Chinese readings is not that there are so many kanji to read, but that there are so few readings to go around, creating a massive confusion of homonyms to the uninitiated.
No sooner does one attempt to establish a set of rules to rein in this phenomenon than exceptions begin to nibble away at one's principles like termites until the entire construction begins to look like a colossal waste of effort. True enough, there are exceptions. A lot of them.
But there i also a great deal of consistency which can be sifted out and structured for the learning. The principal aim of the first ten chapters is to isolate these patterns of consistency and use them to the fullest. To this end I have introduced what are called "signal primitives. Since most of these primitive forms were already assigned a meaning in the first book, the strategy should come as a welcome relief and carry you well over one-third of your way through the on readings.
Whatever readings fall outside the compass of this method are introduced through a variety of devices of uneven difficulty, each assigned its own chapter. Chapter 1 presents 56 kanji which form the parent-kanji for the forms of the hiragana and katakana syllabaries and whose readings are directly related to the modem kana sounds.
Chapter 2 covers a large group of characters belonging to "pure groups" in which the presence of a given signal primitive entails a uniform sound. Chapters 3 presents the small group of kanji whose readings are not homonyms anti may therefore be learned in conjunction with a particular character. Chapter 4, conversely, lists characters with no on reading.
Chapter 5 returns to the signal primitives, this time gathering together those groups in which a signal primitive entails a uniform sound-but with a single exception to the pattern.
These are called "semi-pure" groups. Chapter 6 brings together readings drawn from everyday words, all or nearly all of which should have been learned during the course of a gene al introduction to Japanese conversation.
Allowing for occasional slight shifts of meaning from those assigned the kanji in the first volume, the only work that remains to be done is to see how Japanese puts the pieces together to create new meanings. Chapter 7 returns one final time to the use of signal primitives, picking up what characters can still make use of the device and subdividing them into three classes of "mixed-groups" where a given primitive elements can signal two or more different sounds.
Chapters 8 and 9 follow the pattern of Chapter 6, except that the compounds will be less familiar and require learning some new vocabulary. The only thing these kanji have in common is that they do not belong to any natural phonetic group. The most useful compounds are presented in Chapter 8. The generally less useful compounds of Chapter 9 are all introduced with explanatory comments. Chapter 10 is a wastepaper basket into which I have thrown the remaining readings: All the kanji from Chapters 1 through 10 are arranged in a frame of uniform design see Figure 1 below.
Taken together. Five Indexes have been added to facilitate reference and review. Index 1 lists all the signal primitives, arranged according to number of strokes, and Frame no. Chinese reading lnrernat cross-reference cross-reference 10 Vol. In either case, you would be sidestepping the entire method on which this book is based.
Be sure to read the instructions on pages before doing anything with your cards. Fourth, certain Japanese sounds undergo phonetic alterations when set alongside other sounds. Some of these alterations are regional, some standard. In any case, they are best learned by trial-and-error rather than by a set of rules that is more complex than it is worth. Fifth, a word about Chinese compounds M 1m, L:. With a grain of salt, one might compare the blend of Japanese lam and Chinese on words to the blend of Anglo-Saxon and Latin-Greek words in English.
Generally, our words of Anglo-Saxon root are richer in meaning, vaguer, and more evocative than those of Latin-Greek root, which tend to precision and clarity.
For instance, the word "glass" can suggest a whole range of possible images and meanings, but as soon as we substitute its Latin equivalent, "vitrine," we have narrowed it down to a more concrete meaning.
The presence of Chinese words generally a compound of two or more on readings in Japanese performs a similar narrowing, specifying function, while the native Japanese words reverberate wider and deeper meanings. In the same way that we combine Anglo-Saxon words with Latin-Greek words for example, in the term "fiberglass" , Japanese will occasionally mix on and kun readings in the same compound, As a rule, I have avoided these in the exemplary compounds.
The order of preference in choosing examples was roughly as follows: TIle student is encouraged to substitute familiar compounds at any time for the examples T have chosen. Sixth, the use of signal primitives demands the same rigor applied to primitive elements in Vol. Where a single jot or tittle of difference is present, the element is excluded. Additional attention will have to be paid to the position of the primitive, which was not important in the earlier book.
Seventh, I would register a plea against trying to begin with the two volumes of Remembering the Kilnji at the same time. T wash my hands or as Japanese would have it. That having been said, there is no reason that these pages cannot be used in conjunction with a set of graded readers. J would only advise that you begin this after having worked your way through Chapters 2 and 5.
The benefit of such an approach is that it enables you to take full advantage of the grammatical and vocabulary drills that such readers provide.
At the same time, the commonly heard advice about leaming characters "in context" is one that Is not as the frame in which they first appear. Index 2 presents a listing of all the kanji treated in this and the former volume, arranged according to the number of strokes. Index 3 lists, in syllabic order, all the on readings, their respective kanji, and the number of their respective frames.
Index 4 lists all the lam readings and their respective kanji. Together these two indexes constitute a complete dictionary of readings for the general-use kanji. Index 5 follows the frame sequence of the first book, giving the kun readings and the. The frames have been arranged to facilitate reviewing: For more thoroughgoing review, the flashcards that were prepared according to the design given in Chapter 5 of tile first volume can be completed, with the aid of the Indexes.
A complete explanation is provided in Chapter Although the principles that govern the structure of this book will become clearer as the student grows more familiar with the content, there are a few points that seem worthy of mention at the outset. They represent both the courtesies Ipaid my own memory in learning to read Japanese and the pitfalls ] watched fellow students fall into following other methods. As time goes on, you mayor may not choose to follow them, but at least you should know what they are.
First, relating one compound to another by means of similarities of sound is to be avoided at any cost. It merely clutters the mind with useless information. Resist the temptation. Second, it is best not to try to learn on and am readings at the same time for the same character. Tbe idea of "conquering" a character in its entirety will be supported by nearly every textbook on the kanji you pick up, but is nearly as mistaken as trying to learn to write and read the kanji at the same time.
Once you have learned the general-use characters, you will have a much better base from which to learn the meaning, writing, and readings of new characters en bloc as you meet them. Until then, ding to the Caesarean principle of "divide and conquer. When second or third readings appear, reference to earlier frames will inform you of the fact. You will no doubt notice that the quickest way to complete the information on your flashcards is to rush to Index 5 and start filling them in.
Even if I learn the English word "troglodytic" in sentences such as "I can trace my ancestors back to the troglodytic age" or "There's a family of troglodytes in my tool shed," the word still needs to be learned in the first place.
New Japanese vocabulary falls on the foreign ear with much the same impact-totaUy unrelated to anything we already know.
The benefit of a context is that it enables one to d rill anum ber of words and assimilate something of how they relate to One another grammatically and connotatively. Context 'defines the finer nuances that usage and tradition have affixed to the kanji, but the compounds themselves still need to be learned. For this reason, students who wish systematically to make their way through this book frame by frame need not trouble themselves over the absence of context provided they do not abandon all reading practice in the process.
Eighth and finally, a vigorous warning against the use of romaji in learning to read Japanese kanji. Get the idea out of your mind that the Roman alphabet is a "crutch" to help you hobble along until you master the hiragana and katakana syllabaries, It is nothing of the kind. It is rather a slow and selfinflicted amputation that will leave you crippled for the rest of your Japanesereading years.
Not only does the Roman alphabet inflict quirks on your pronunciation, it cultivates a systematic bias against the kana that gets harder and harder to uproot.
Be patient with the kana, and never write Roman letters underneath them. The stricter you are in expelling all romaji from your study of Japanese words, the quicker you will find that Roman letters become an obstacle to reading and writing, which they are for the Japanese and should be for anyone learning the language.
The manuscript of this book was completed in December of and privately circulated in the spring of the following year under the title Adventures in Kanji-Land, Vol. A Guide to Reading Japanese Characters. I decided to issue it in a new edition at this time because of the many letters I received from those who had found profit in Remembering the Kanji and were anxious to know how further to systematize their study of the kanji.
It is my hope that these pages will go some way towards answering that request. It only remains for me to express my thanks to Sasabe Midori 1ti: Nagoya, Japan 25 October James W.
In modern Japanese not all of the kana retain the sound of their parent- kanji, but there are a number that do, whether as kun-yomi or on-yomi, which makes learning their reading almost automatic. Many of the calligraphic transformations wiU be immediately apparent, while others require some experience in Chinese calligraphy. For these latter, handdrawn characters have been inserted.
The letters "R" and "K," set off in parentheses and inserted in the location of the internal cross-reference numbers, indicate whether the kanji in the frame is parent to hiragana or katakana or both. To make a representative listing, it has been necessary to include a number of rare exemplary compounds and compounds that mix on and fcun readings. And popular novelists, as always, cling tenacious- ly to their cache of little-known glyphs as a mark of the trade.
The idea behind the present book was to offer a third choice: supple- mentary kanji to lay a solid basis for contemporary Japanese. In addition to the method of selection explained in Dr. Of the many people who assisted me in this project, I would like par- ticularly to thank Ronald D. First, it is dismissed as nonsense. Finally, it is seen to be important, but not really anything new. In this connection, I must admit I am of two minds about Remem- bering the Kanji and its companion volumes.
Its reception by students of the Japanese language across the world has been as much a surprise to me as to the publishers, the Japan Publi- cations Trading Company. From the start I was convinced that if there was anything important in the method, it surely was noth- ing new. All I had done, after all, was to put some semblance of order into what students of the kanji had always done: trick their minds into making easily forgettable shapes more memorable.
The sales of the books, as well as scores of letters from readers, has convinced me that this is in fact the case. On the one hand, the method seems to have proved itself a natural one suited to large number of students motivated to study the kanji on their own. On the other, it remains virtually useless for classroom instruction. For one who does not know from experience the question behind the method, the answer—even if it works—makes no sense.
Whatever the merits of Remembering the Kanji as a learning tool, then, its demerits as a teach- ing tool are beyond redemption. This is probably for the best. To force the expectations of the textbook on the method would probably only end up frustrating everyone—teachers and students.