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How to pronounce "Shinya Yamanaka"?

 
 
Reply Mon 15 Feb, 2010 02:30 am

Context:
He and Shinya Yamanaka of Kyoto University, Japan, who famously reprogrammed ordinary cells to become similar to embryonic stem cells, are among 14 signatories to a letter of complaint sent in July 2009 to major scientific journals, including Nature and Science. Frustrated by the lack of response, some signatories decided to publicise the letter's content more widely this week.
 
Ionus
 
  4  
Reply Mon 15 Feb, 2010 03:16 am
@oristarA,
Japanese is easy..it is written in english how you pronounce it in Japanese :
shi-nya ya-ma-na-ka
oristarA
 
  1  
Reply Mon 15 Feb, 2010 04:04 am
@Ionus,
But I don't know Japanese language.
Ionus
 
  1  
Reply Mon 15 Feb, 2010 04:49 am
@oristarA,
You only need to know english pronounciation.
dadpad
 
  1  
Reply Mon 15 Feb, 2010 06:28 am
@oristarA,
neither do most of us here on this site
0 Replies
 
JTT
 
  1  
Reply Mon 15 Feb, 2010 04:44 pm
@Ionus,
Quote:
You only need to know english pronounciation.


Sounds reasonable to me, Ionus. Probably works for Spanish, German and a host of other languages, too.
JTT
 
  1  
Reply Mon 15 Feb, 2010 04:52 pm
@oristarA,
This might help you, Ori.



Now you have to know what "syllables" there are to pronounce.

First name: (shi) - (n) - (ya)

Family name: (ya) - (ma) - (na) - (ka)

ossobuco
 
  1  
Reply Mon 15 Feb, 2010 05:26 pm
@Ionus,
I don't speak japanese but I have had japanese bosses and mentors, and so have heard various japanese words once in a while; for example, the names of firms that we dealt with. The pronunciation has seemed the same as english to me, but I have sometimes been surprised about where the accent would be in relation to what I would guess on seeing the written word.

I just now looked up about accent + pronunciation in japanese, and found a link about pitch and accent and tone. It is all a little complicated for me, but Section 5 seemed useful. http://socrates.berkeley.edu/~hasegawa/Accent/accent.

I would look how to say a word by checking google for the word I wanted - I've done this before for Hiroshima since I didn't remember where the accent went when I heard the word.

googling Hiroshima pronunciation, I get:
http://www.forvo.com/word/hiroshima/
click on this and then the sound cue (the triangle) and a japanese person will say the word.

I don't know if this works with people's names. I'll try it:
I tried Shinya Yamanaka in the word search, and there were "0 words found" and an invitation to Add Shinya Yamanaka to Forvo to know its pronunciation.
I tried that, and you have to register to check it - I presume to check words they haven't recorded yet.
Ionus
 
  1  
Reply Mon 15 Feb, 2010 07:18 pm
@JTT,
My knowledge of Japanese is limited, so please dont take the question as a criticism, but I thought nya was one syllable ?

EDIT..Ooops ~! just got your ref up and running..I withdraw the question.. Embarrassed
0 Replies
 
Ionus
 
  2  
Reply Mon 15 Feb, 2010 07:40 pm
@JTT,
There is only one error you can make in talking a foriegn language and that is to talk too fast...I have got all sorts of reactions from giggles to declarations of war, but in general people are pleased you are making an effort. If you dont have a musical ear, you will never be a linguist (me for example) but you will get by.

It is always a good idea to learn the swear words first..it will help you avoid trouble...In pigin english, kus-kus is a small tree marsupial and the vernacular for a human vagina. The pronounciation, either a oo (as in cool) or a arh sound (as in car)for the u makes all the difference. I didnt know that and started WWIII.

When first learning a language, pronounce it in english..most people will pick up simply by the spelling and the American method of learning english has us all prouncing every syllable...this is a huge advantage..Italians also have a leg up for english for the same reason. And never be afraid to intersperse english and the local toungue.
Ionus
 
  1  
Reply Mon 15 Feb, 2010 07:44 pm
@ossobuco,
Good points. I learnt my first live language (I dont count Latin or French) by being told of the musical rythym most languages have...I am no good at this, but it seems Hi-ro-shi-ma is down-up-down-up ??
oristarA
 
  1  
Reply Mon 15 Feb, 2010 09:55 pm
Thank you all.
0 Replies
 
JTT
 
  1  
Reply Mon 15 Feb, 2010 10:04 pm
@Ionus,
Quote:
When first learning a language, pronounce it in english..most people will pick up simply by the spelling


That's not a good idea, Ionus, for learning any language. For one thing it's difficult to air spell. Smile

You don't want to set patterns that you just have to break later. The Japanese do it this way, saying English words in what is called katakana English and because of this and some other inherent problems with the system of teaching, they are close to or are the worst English language learners on the planet.

The sounds of Japanese are very easy to learn, as are the sounds of most languages. Confusing any aspect of the mother tongue with the new language is a recipe for disaster.

You can actually use thousands of English "words" to practice Japanese, but you can't use the English sounds for those words to practice them in Japanese.

nya is a combined "syllable" sound for Japanese, but n is the only "consonant" that occurs by its lonesome. All other "consonants" are combined with a "vowel".

So one syllable 'girl' becomes two syllable 'garu'; 'strike', a one syllable word in English becomes a five syllable, 'sutoraiku' [su-to-ra-i-ku] or 'sutoraiki' depending whether you're talking baseball or a particular action workers take.
Ionus
 
  3  
Reply Mon 15 Feb, 2010 10:42 pm
@JTT,
I love learning and I thank you for the information. I wish to withdraw "When first learning a language" as what I really should have specified was my advice was for a tourist who wished to speak their way through a whistle stop tour and go home with photos. I should have also said it was not applicable to tonal languages, although Japanese is not tonal.

The alternative for a tourist is to speak nothing but english, and I think this is somewhat counter productive to finding out what other countries are like. I always try to speak the local, and it usually results in people not seeing my size but laughing their heads off at me..I am cool with that, and it brings out a helpful nature from people. They decide Australians are OK and I get to be a successful tourist who experiences something of the local culture. You have been to Nippon ?

(Tomorrow I learn english !!!! These are exciting times we live in !!!!)
JTT
 
  2  
Reply Mon 15 Feb, 2010 10:42 pm
@Ionus,
Japanese, unlike Chinese, is not at all tonal. It is very even/flat. One of the things Japanese first note among English speakers is their tendency to accentuate, as we sometime do in English.

This doesn't, of course, mean that Japanese never do WTF type intonation.

Let me try to do a rough approximation in print for Hiroshima. Say 'hero' pronouncing 'he' like we do the pronoun he ['hi' is approximate to the English 'he', as the vowel sound 'e' is represented in Japanese by the letter 'i'.

Are we clear so far?

Say 'ro' like the 'row' in row your boat but clip the last sound, don't draw it out as we do in English. And to say a Japanese 'r', [note where your tongue is when you say 'row' in English, low in the mouth and the tongue might touch the skin below the lower teeth gumline. Try some other English 'r' words and note the postion of the tongue. river - liver

To do a Japanese 'R', put your tongue at the intersection of the top teeth and the roof of your mouth, which is the placement for the English 'L'. But to do the Japanese 'R', don't let it linger there like we do for our L's, eg. 'law', just slap that point, do a quick tongue flap.

Do it a number of times and depending how how quickly and adroitly you move that big slab of meat, the tongue, you'll sometimes hear an 'L' sound' and you'll sometimes hear a 'R' sound, law raw.

That's why many Westerners think Japanese can't say 'L'. Well of course they can't say 'L', Japanese doesn't have an 'L' sound but it has close to an 'L' sound and that is their slapped 'R' sound and it occurs because the placement of the tongue is the same position we use for 'L'. The only difference is the period of time that the tongue is allowed to linger at that position.

All that for two sounds, 'hi' and 'ro'. Whew!

shima

'shi' like the English 'she' but again, not as drawn out as an English 'she'. 'ma' like "Hi Ma" or the English word 'maw' but clip the last sound. Whereas English people tend to pronounce each of the four syllables of Hiroshima separately, in Japanese, it's almost all smooshed together in one smooth sound.
Ionus
 
  1  
Reply Mon 15 Feb, 2010 11:01 pm
@JTT,
Quote:
Are we clear so far?
Phbbbttttt !!! Of course I am clevar ! I tell evryone I am clevar. Havent I demonstrated my clevarity ?

Seriously I enjoyed your post. Obviously you speak Japanese better than a phrase book armed tourist.
JTT
 
  2  
Reply Mon 15 Feb, 2010 11:08 pm
@Ionus,
Quote:
Seriously I enjoyed your post. Obviously you speak Japanese better than a phrase book armed tourist.


Thank you, Ionus.

Only marginally. I know not to get flustered when their eyes get big and the look of surprise on their faces might lead one to think I suggested inviting the Emperor over for a barbeque.

So instead of resorting to all capital letters, many phrase book armed tourists actually think speaking like this helps, I do a microsecond burst of Buddhist calm and composure and get myself in Japanese mode.
Ionus
 
  2  
Reply Mon 15 Feb, 2010 11:20 pm
@JTT,
I have heard it is difficult to know what greeting and what degree of formality is to be used for a given situation as there are several levels of formality in greetings. Many almost fluent foriegn devils stuff up what level of formality to use, as it changes by location, who is present, their relationship to you and so on.

In Australia it is quite simple. The Police call me mate untill they decide to arrest me, whereupon they start calling me sir.
JTT
 
  2  
Reply Mon 15 Feb, 2010 11:35 pm
@Ionus,
That part is difficult for every language - witness the recent minor kerfuffle with Tintin and Setanta.

Speaking about Japan, get the sounds right and you'll so impress that you'll be forgiven even if you asked to sleep with one's wife/husband or son/daughter.

Seriously, Japanese are "trained", by a combination of nationalist pride and propaganda to think that there isn't a foreigner who should or could ever know these intricacies, things that are only known to Japanese, so huge faux pas [how do you write the plural of that??] are readily forgiven, probably even more so, because they've had a chuckle at your expense.
ossobuco
 
  1  
Reply Mon 15 Feb, 2010 11:56 pm
@Ionus,
Seems so, Ionus. Never ever trust me.

 

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