I’m thinking about what shows to watch for active immersion. I’ll probably post separately asking for recommendations, but I did want to ask this first:
Rather than looking for actual japanese stuff and filtering what might be interesting to me and filtering what would be reasonably understandable (not anime, I’ve been told), I imagine it would be much easier to watch my favorite English language shows, but with the Japanese audio.
What is the general opinion on this, as a way to do active immersion? Just as good as native Japanese content? Almost as good? Fully bad?
I’ll certainly do some JP content, but this makes the catalog much broader and easier.
I don’t know if there’s a ‘general’ opinion about this because I don’t know if it’s a common approach, but I don’t think it will be ‘bad’ per se as long as the audio is professionally produced. The main problem will be that you won’t get the accompanying body language that a Japanese person would have while saying the same things. Also, the differences between English and Japanese will probably mean that you’ll find that what’s said in Japanese is significantly different from what’s said in English, at the very least in terms of tone, and very possibly in terms of the specifics of what is said. If these are series that you know very well in English, you might find yourself surprised at what you hear in Japanese from time to time. Also, since Japanese has tone particles and multiple registers that indicate formality, you might sometimes find that what you hear in Japanese seems too formal or too casual compared to what was said in the original English. I mean, I’m not sure how the translations are done, so you could always end up with a ‘flat’ translation with almost everything in one register. Moving between levels of formality will probably seem less fluid than in English anyhow. These things aside… I suppose you’ll be fine.
Why not anime? It’s taught me a lot, honestly. The main thing to keep in mind is that you need to ‘convert’ the casual Japanese into polite Japanese, and be aware that certain phrases should only be used in a casual context. That aside though, it’s not as though anime Japanese is ‘fake’. It’s just that not all of it can be used ‘as is’ in everyday life.
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