Why do you learn?

Yo, Brent here.

I’m just listening to Strength by Abingdon Boys School, (Awesome music if you like Ajikan.) downloading some Kreva and Kick the Can Crew, when I realized something.

I still don’t have a goal yet.

I don’t exactly know why I’m doing this. I’ve seen people compare language aquisition to a trip in the car. You don’t (Usually! ww) get in a car without knowing where you’re going. You may not have the entire trip planned out, but you do have a destination, and you also have a reason.

Like…I’m hungry. So I get in my car and I know that I want to go to a store, so that I can buy me something to eat. (I just ran out of food. I’m a poor shopper…ww) So, I don’t know the exact roads I want to take (‘Cause there’s different ways to get there. I live in the city) And then I head to the store.

See? Reason: Buy food beacause I’m hungry.
Destination: Store

What’s your reason for learning your L2?

As of right now, I only have a destination. “Learning Japanese”. I don’t have a reason.

Yeah, I like manga, and I like Anime, and I even like games. (The Otaku trifecta) But why do I want to learn the language? I mean, most anime and manga get at least a fansub now, and there are a lot of games that get ported to the US (There’s also a lot that don’t, but…y’know?)

So. Why?

I think I’ve found a good reason for myself. I like to talk about and analyze things. (Languages, fighting games, card games, etc.) And, in all of those things, Japanese people and American people always play differently. They just do. For some reason, Japanese people tend to be much more defensive, and Americans tend to be much more Aggressive. So, in fighters, characters can be played very differently, just because of our cultures. In card games, it’s usually the American group that breaks things.

(And as a disclaimer, of course I’m grouping people right now. I know not everyone’s like that. If I hear that in the comments I’ll know you didn’t read this! ww)

But, I digress.

I want to see things like the Japanese. I want to learn from them, so that I can get more experience with that type of play. I want to be able to discuss games, about what they like and don’t, for when I finish my card game. I want to see things in a new light.

And that’s why I want to learn.

The Sapir-Whorf hypothesis is a very interesting read. At least to me. (I did a report on it in the 10th grade. I was real bad at keeping a coherent train of thought because I was so excited. ww)

It talks about how our thoughts are influenced by our language. Mostly like…We can’t really think of something if we don’t have a word for it. There have been tests where they take bilinguals, and have them fill out a personality test, and depending on which language the test was in, they answer differently.

So, that’s why I want to learn now. I want to see things like Japanese People. And not just Japanese people. Really…most people. I like Swedish too. Probably learn that next.

Anyway,  don’t want to bore you with a wall of text, so I’ll wrap it up now.

Why do you learn? Answer in the comment box below. I can’t wait to hear your responses.


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