Do most Japanese know English?

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#1 Posted by br0kenrabbit (13422 posts) -

I've noticed English pops up a lot among Japanese text. I've seen video games that were mostly in Japanese except for some phrases like Level Up! Miss! Skill Level Up!, and so on. I also see a lot of English on storefront signage, so that's got me curious what the uptake rate of English is over there.

#2 Posted by michaelP4 (16680 posts) -
No idea. I'd imagine they'd know a bit. And yeah, like any language, words from other languages are adopted.
#3 Posted by Ace6301 (21389 posts) -
I think most "know" English but very few are fluent in it. A lot of the signage is pretty butchered too.
#4 Posted by -Renegade (8340 posts) -

its mandatory that they learn it in their schools but just like anything else that is only taught in schools if you are not constantly learning it then you might forget it.

#5 Posted by Miroku32 (8666 posts) -
They for sure know Engrish.
#6 Posted by Starchaser187 (451 posts) -

From what I read and my experience in the country before, English is taught in schools. But it's usually focused on grammar and writing than actual conversation which is why most Japanese have a much easier time reading English than hearing and talking it

#7 Posted by Ace6301 (21389 posts) -
They for sure know Engrish. Miroku32
#8 Posted by Celldrax (14778 posts) -

They do have a number of English words that are regularly used in everyday speech. But although they do learn it in school, I don't think most really learn much beyond basic phrases and such.

#9 Posted by mrmusicman247 (17577 posts) -
the have CLASSES DEDICATED to english they know more english than we know japenese that's for sure
#10 Posted by zeroyaoi (1972 posts) -
They for sure know Engrish. Miroku32
Twas going to say this. :P
#11 Posted by ScorpionTroll (810 posts) -

They for sure know Engrish. Miroku32

#12 Posted by Miroku32 (8666 posts) -

[QUOTE="Miroku32"]They for sure know Engrish. Ace6301

I wish I were a bird.

Now this is engrish

#13 Posted by Blue-Sky (10346 posts) -

They learn it in school, just like we learn Spanish over here.  But how many people actually remember what they learned in school? 

Also, it's pretty common to use words of another language for idioms and phrases. Think about how ofteen we use greek and french words in our language.

#14 Posted by jun_aka_pekto (17345 posts) -

the have CLASSES DEDICATED to english they know more english than we know japenese that's for suremrmusicman247

My thoughts too.

A fairly good number seems to know English, especially those who live or work near US bases.

#15 Posted by k2theswiss (16599 posts) -

English is used around the world so most nations know little even if their main language isn't English. Of course even if schools teach it if you don't use it then you won't be decent or remember it. 

#16 Posted by Shadowchronicle (26039 posts) -
They would know a bit because they learn it in school but I doubt many are fluent when they speak it.
#17 Posted by michael_1234576 (8621 posts) -
Every Japanese person I've ever talked to hasn't really known too much English
#18 Posted by josephl64 (4424 posts) -

It's a required course in high school, but much like Westerners, they forget most of it later. I also learned from some foreigners teaching English there that it's not taught as a serious course. What I mean by this is that the goal technically isn't too be fluent, but they just have fun with it and get just slightly acquainted with the langauge. They should still be able to remember basic words, at least that was my impression when I was there for 2 months

#19 Posted by The_Lipscomb (2603 posts) -

A lot less than people expect. When I was in asia.. My friends who went to tokyo said even there not many people spoke English.. Thay can read it well.. but speaking it fluently is very difficult for many of them.