Woman Radical Mnemonic

Amidst the current Rowling controversy I just wanted to say how much I appreciate the mnemonic for ‘woman’ being ‘This radical looks like a wide person made up of two stacked Xs. Women generally have two XXs for chromosomes, and back in the day they were praised for their wide, child-bearing hips. We may not think of women this way anymore, but way back when Japanese was made, this made them think of a woman.’
I am a trans man, but I absolutely would not have minded if Wanikani had ommited the ‘generally’. I would never have expected a Japanese language learning app to be so casually trans inclusive. I noticed it the first time I saw it and was really grateful (and surprised!). Unfortunately a lot of people do still think of women (and trans men) this way, but I’m happy that the people who made this mnemonic don’t. It makes doing my reviews to get my mind of the discourse much more pleasant.
I hope all my fellow trans people who have been affected by this have a nice day! And thank you to all our allies making an effort! Inclusive language really makes a difference. We see it, and we appreciate it.


Yes, that is cool!

What is the Rowling controversy? You don’t need to say, if you don’t want this thread to turn into a discussion or anything. I just hadn’t heard of it.


Oh no problem! JK Rowling (the author of Harry Potter) made some statements misrepresenting trans people and supporting transphobic legislation. It’s a whole mess lol. I wish I hadn’t heard of it either.


Well, that is just too bad! I wonder how she feels about all of the gender swapping fanfic out there…


Not good I hope! Thankfully a lot of her fanbase isn’t as transphobic as she is, so I can still enjoy the series


I’ve read most of the main books at least twice. Now reading Philosopher’s Stone in Japanese. It’s fun!


Wow! That sounds really advanced! Have fun!

It’s easier if you already know the story. It was translated by the Pottermore group, I think. You can get it as an ebook.


I’m nowhere near that level yet, but I’ll keep it in mind!

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I know you said you’re not on the level yet, but I still just want to add that the audio book version has an awesome narrator!

You can listen to samples on audible here, and they’re available from the pottermore webshop.


Oh, that’s nice! Thanks! You’ve earned your title of Helpful Durtle indeed :slight_smile:


I’d never noticed that about the mnemonic, though as a cis man I guess I didn’t really think about it two years ago when I did level 1, but I really appreciate that it’s written that way, seeing it with fresh eyes now.

There are few more mnemonics like this too, I’ve noticed, often addressing bias in the origins of certain words, the one I can think of off the top of my head (because it’s a darn leech!) is 主人 (Head of Household) which has the synonym of husband and says:

“Also, this often means husband. Because, I guess the head of household back in the day was the husband. Those sexist ancient people!”

Oh and, as somebody with a Deathly Hallows prominently tattooed on their forearm, I wish I hadn’t heard about it either. “Happiness can be found in even the darkest of places, if one only remembers to turn on the light” - Albus Dumbledore.


It’s so nice! Especially bc it isn’t necessary. No one would call Wanikani out if they didn’t do this. But they do anyway! Awesome

I feel bad for trans ppl and allies in the fandom. But the books really are still wonderful, and there are plenty of ppl in the fandom who support trans ppl. So don’t worry about being judged. It’s perfectly fine to still like the books. I’m sure the tattoo still looks cool as heck. Rowling’s shit opinions shouldn’t change that


Exactly, companies that make inclusivity part of their platform without any motive are definitely in good karmic balance ^-^

Yeah, most people I know in the fandom are equally distressed by it, but (especially those of us who became friends over the internet over a decade ago now, ran podcasts, wrote about the books, and went to conventions) have largely come the conclusion over the past couple years of Jo being bigoted like this that the fandom is something we built, inspired by the books, not something that owes any alligence to her any more particularly. The fandom, as I’ve known it, has always been fiercely inclusive, so yeah, I’ve no worry about being judged because of it :slight_smile:



Exactly! And those tattoos are beautiful! Really nice linework


I’m just a big wimp when it comes to pain, so I got the simplest geometric linework I could, hehe. I got the DH a year before the D20, I caved eventually and got that because I needed it to feel more balanced :stuck_out_tongue:


Random thought about the woman radical. In 安い, I had another thought why that Kanji also means “cheap”…

The ironic thing about this is that I have been around since some of the comically offensive mnemonics were still here (the Charlie Sheen and Hard Gay stuff). I think that when they realized they were big enough that they had to remove that stuff, they put some serious thought into removing other potentially offensive items.

I am glad they did. We are a diverse group here, in every way.


There’s a historical reason for it:


They will not stand diversity of thought though. haha

Good luck at being a conservative at Wanikani :joy: