New PDF release: Japanese Numbers Game (Nissan Institute/Routledge Japanese

By T Crump

The japanese Numbers online game offers a basic learn of the entire box of jap well known numeracy. It introduces the reader to a global of numbers within which fortune-telling, the abacus, video games related to numbers in addition to curious numerical names (of either humans and areas) illustrate a well-liked obsession with structures of counting, calculation and forecasting. Thomas Crump meticulously explores the cultural roots of attitudes towards numbers and indicates the modern implications of a tradition within which mechanical numeracy (and quantity obsession) is standard however the optimum degrees of educational arithmetic nonetheless fall in need of international criteria. Crump's research of this cultural phenomenon strikes past generalization to bare the usually contradictory love affair among the japanese and the quantity process.

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Extra resources for Japanese Numbers Game (Nissan Institute/Routledge Japanese Studies)

Example text

With the exception of the numbers from 11 to 19 (which in many languages are a marked or special case), the system is essentially the same as that of spoken English. What makes it remarkable in the case of Chinese, and derivatively, that of Japanese also, is that the written form corresponds so precisely to the spoken: this is not a property of any other known system of number words (Menninger 1977:458). In principle, the Japanese could completely give up the use of their autochthonous system, for that imported from China is adequate for all purposes, as it is, naturally enough, in the different versions of Chinese.

The linguistic evidence is that Japanese is not an isolated language, such as Basque, but a member of the Altaic family,37 which is represented by such other languages as Korean at one geographical extreme and Turkish at the other. The archaeological record supports this conclusion: the Japanese were an immigrant population, with a substantial component from the Asian mainland, who largely displaced the original Ainu inhabitants. But all this the hard-core Yamato enthusiasts can brush aside. Everything happened so long ago, at a time before there were any historical records, that an alternative mythology provides an equally valid charter for Japanese traditional culture.

Wood, for instance, gives birth to fire, since fire is made by rubbing two pieces of wood together. 2 Gogyo¯ Alternative number systems 41 arrows indicates that one element destroys the other, so that wood destroys earth, since the roots of trees break up the ground. At the same time every force implies its opposite, so that every case of s)sh) has an element of s)koku and vice versa. If there is always a cloud on the horizon, every cloud still has its silver lining. If the roots of trees destroy the earth, they can also bind it together and prevent landslides.

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