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Thursday, July 2, 2009

Japanese Names

One problem I have been encountering quite often is Japanese names pronounced in Mandarin. In the U.S. Japanese names are all spelled out in English. However in Taiwan, the Japanese names are pronounced in Mandarin because they consist mainly of Chinese characters. Since I know Japanese people mostly by their romanized names, I often have conversations as follows:

"Michael, you must know the designs by 深澤直人 (Shen Ze Zhi Ren)"
"Uh, how to you say 深澤直人 in Japanese?"
"I dunno."

Conversations like these all require a Google search on my iphone to continue. Most of the times I actually do know the Japanese people in the conversations, just not their names in Chinese characters.

Note: 深澤直人 is Naoto Fukasawa, one of my favorite Japanese designers.

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