What east Asian language should you learn?

 I've done some research about choosing what East Asian language (Chinese, Japanese and Korean) to learn.  

Here are the easy parts of each Language:

Chinese -

-Simple grammar

-Spoken in 5 countries

-Each character is one syllable

-Strong economy

-800 million people speak it as a native language 


-Many Japanese don't speak English, very useful in Japan

-Spoken in 2 countries

-125 million speakers

-Easy pronunciation 

-Interesting scripts


-Easy alphabet

-Spoken in 2 countries

-70 million speakers

-Many English loanwords

-Similar to Japanese

 Hard parts about each language: 


-Complex writing system


-Not as nice sounding as European languages

-2 types of characters: Traditional and Simplified 

-5000 characters


-Many Kanji to learn (1954 kanji)

-The 'r' sound

-Grammar is very different to English grammar

-You eventually forget kanji

-3 writing systems to learn


-Hard to pronounce

-'Backwards' grammar


-Politeness forms

-Many Koreans speak English

 In conclusion the easiest east asian language grammatically is Mandarin Chinese, the easiest one write is Korean and the easiest to pronounce is Japanese.

It takes most people to learn to speak Chinese 1 year but 3 to 4 years to learn to read and write.

It takes most people 1 year to speak Japanese, but takes a minimum of 6 months and a maximum of 2 years to learn to read it.

Korean is surprisingly the hardest to learn out of the three. It takes 1 year for basic oral fluency but several years to master all of it.

If I were going to learn an easy east asian language I would learn Japanese but if I were going to learn one for travel and business I would learn Mandarin Chinese. Some people purposely choose to learn to just speak Mandarin but it would be somewhat embarrassing when you have to constantly ask 'What does that say?' to a stranger in China. 





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