Why is there a note that says this word is “often derogatory”? Is it? This is one of the most liberally used colloquialisms of Japanese I’ve heard, I thought of it as akin to the “like” filler in English. Recently a Japanese told me it’s sort of like “kinda”. I have used it with old and young Japanese several times and have never gotten called on it. Can an expert give some explanation for this Jisho note?
I don’t know too much about it, but I came across an explanation about this somewhere in a footnote once (sadly can’t find it anymore), I’ll try to explain, if I remember correctly you have the colloqiual shortening of なにか that you would use amongst friends and the like, to mean something / anything.
何かしてみましょう。(Let’s try something)
And then there’s なんか as the adverbial particle to give it a negative emphasis in regards to the speaker, something like that.
助言 なんか 要らない。[Your (damn) advice isn’t needed / Don’t need any advice)
Hopefully someone else can explain it better, I’m not too familiar with the matter myself, can’t guarantee that it’s correct as it relies on a faint recollection I have about an explanation somewhere in the margins of a manga or something. I got the second example sentence from https://en.wiktionary.org/wiki/なんか, they give some explanations and use-cases, maybe that’s some help?
Yeah, the one you’re thinking of is a few entries down, under なにか.
Alright I see now, it’s in the alternative forms part right here. Makes much more sense now. I was bewildered by the first entry for なんか being marked derogatory, I didn’t notice the innocuous one was just in 何か. Now I know. Thank you for the helpful replies, Leebo and matskye.
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