外来 vs 外交 - help?


#1

I’m having a horrible time keeping these separate. I typically reverse them. What mnemonics do you guys use for these?

Thanks.


#2

When you import something it comes from the outside.
Diplomacy is when you mingle with outsiders.


#3

I usually use the meanings - when I see these I always see them as their individual meanings separate first then try to combine them. So 外来 would be “coming from outside”, or “coming from a foreign place (country)” which to me make sense as imported. 外交、however, would be “outside mixing”, or “mixing with a foreign place (country).” When you engage in diplomacy with another country, often times you have to “mix” your respective ideals and values.

That’s my thinking behind the two words anyway and I haven’t been mixing them up. :o However, it took me a bit to consistently think of the logic bridge for 外交、but 外来 just makes sense, to me, without thinking too much.


#4

Like your computer is imported from china = comes from outside of your county

Diplomacy is mixing things outside of country. Like Irak and Libya were doing rather fine under dictatorship but after some diplomatic moves everything is nicely mixed now. No more order after mixing things by outside powers.


#5

Is it that you mix up the meanings, or you don’t yet know the meanings of the individual kanji and have a hard time telling them apart?

外交 - It looks like there’s a six (六) on the top of 交. I think about the six-party talks held between the two Koreas, Japan, China, Russia, and the US. Six-party talks = diplomacy.

外来- The character 来 looks like there’s a lid on top of some rice (米). Japan has laws putting a “lid” on exporting a lot of its rice, so it can’t be imported by other countries.

A bit complicated I know, but that’s how my brain works. :slight_smile:


#6

外来 - foreign - comes from outside
外交 - diplomacy - mixes with outside, or outside mixes …

Just think of people mixing together at the U.N., or if you like Star Trek: TNG, any of those times they had a party for the diplomats… or… you know, any other time diplomats from other countries are together mixing with one another.


#7

I was going to say what everyone else is saying, but I realized that it’s easy to say that once you already know the meanings.

Imagining it from the perspective of someone who doesn’t know them yet, it’s easy to make (wrong) mnemonics for the opposite words from the correct kanji meanings

View at your own peril

外来 - when something comes from outside you need to conduct diplomacy with it
外交 - you can mix with things from the outside by importing them


#8

I only pay attention to this one.
外交

I just remember that “Geico” handles all of our diplomatic affairs.


#9

This… this is my problem. My logic is in reverse. But many people have offered up good ways to bend my brain in other directions. ‘Mingle’ instead of ‘mix’ will help me think of people. seeing a ‘6’ instead of ‘dad’ is pretty clever, too. I have always seen the 6, but I never thought about 6-party talks. That’s a great way to associate.

After I made this post and was driving to work, this morning, I was thinking about Geico and how a lizard represents it and then I thought about diplomacy and how most diplomats are slimy little reptiles. So now I can have an audible mnemonic as well as the fine suggestions above for visual or translation ones.

Thanks, everybody!!


#10

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