EssayJapanese traditionUncorrected

Second Person Pronouns

  • Second Person Pronouns


    It may be very difficult for Japanese learners to treat Japanese second person pronouns.

    Second person pronouns are pronouns used when writers/speakers address someone directly; the most common one in English is ‘you.’
    二人称代名詞とは、受け手を指す代名詞のことで、英語では ‘you’ が一般的です。

    The Japanese language has ‘anata‘ (あなた) and ‘kimi‘ (君) as typical translations of ‘you,’ but you should not use them blindly.
    典型的な ‘you’ の訳語としては「あなた」や「君」がありますが、気軽に使っていはいけません。

    In Japan, second person pronouns are basically used only to refer to your friends or lower ranking people.

    If you want to refer to someone safely, you can choose several ways: adding ‘san‘ (さん) to one’s last name, using one’s position name like ‘sensei‘ (先生 – teacher) or ‘buchō‘ (部長 – manager), or not using any second person terms.

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