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  5. "I am Chinese."

"I am Chinese."


June 8, 2017



Why Duo Lingo translates ちゅう (chū) with 中 and also なか (naka) with 中. How do you do differences with those two kanjis ?


I'm sure you've had your question answered already since it's been 5 months. But to any future readers who are picking up the language, kanji are Chinese characters that often have both on'yomi (Chinese "imported" readings, modified to fit Japanese sounds) and kun'yomi (native Japanese readings). For 中, the imported Chinese reading (on'yomi) is ちゅう and the native Japanese reading (kun'yomi) is なか.

There are specific grammar rules for when to use which reading, with many exceptions. In order to keep things simple, there are a few basic rules of thumb follow to help you guess the reading. When you see a kanji by itself or attached to hiragana to form a word, the native Japanese reading (kun'yomi) will be used. Kanji that are paired with other kanji in the same word (jukugo word) often use the imported Chinese reading (on'yomi). There are certain exceptions such as counting numbers (which use on'yomi), and body parts (which use kun'yomi), etc. You'll learn them as you study kanji in more detail. I suggest trying out WaniKani to learn different kanji and their readings in much more detail.

Interestingly enough, Duolingo seems to have a consistency error with the 中 kanji in specific because you always see the ちゅう reading with the なか sound played. Do report this as the wrong sound being played if you come across it.


Many basic kanji have multiple pronunciations. The context is what determines the pronunciation you use and what meaning you're trying to convey. 中 as なか means middle


It's very confusing. This app needs to get better at explaining things. It's having us read one thing, and saying another.


Like ur profile picture! Deku-kun, lol jk, but i like boku no hero academia too! Also you are right. I have noticed it will say this kanji means this, but then says it means something else.


It is tricky, I had trouble with this one too. Same character different sound. The fun of languages!


akanji's pronounciation differs when it is used in a diffrent word


In Kanji, there are two ways of pronunciation: Kun-yoki and On-yomi I learned them many years ago, but I recommend you look for them. It will be useful.


Naka is wrong one, thats for 田


You too? (^▽^)


How do you do! ♪( ´▽`)


When do you use ji thing in between? When you say I am John it's written without and I am Chinese you include it. Can you use it when saying I am John or is that wrong?


I believe 人 (jin) means person. So you are really saying "China PERSON I am" or "I am a Chinese person."


So why "I am Japanese" without (jin) but " I am Chinese" with (jin) I don't understandt it.

  • "I am Japanese" = 日本です。
  • "I am Chinese" = 中国です。

Both of them use 人, but you might be thinking of the sentence 日本しゅっしんです。which means a different thing. 出身【しゅっしん】means "a person's origin", so this sentence means "I am from Japan". (Being "from Japan" is not the same as being "Japanese")


If it helps, there is technically an omitted の in 中国人 (中国の人) that implies 中国 is an adjective, and 人 is the noun being described. You wouldn't say "John person," but you would say "Chinese person."


Would the first be pronounced ちゅうごくじん and the secondちゅうごくのひと?


Yes, I believe that's correct.


Why is there no use of saying です after saying "I am Chinese" but after America for example you do have to?


"desu" is a copula used in polite speaking. It means "to be" and note that verbs in Japanese are put at the end of the sentence. In Japanese, you can drop the subject if it's clear what the subject is. So here "Watashi wa chuugokujin desu" becomes "chuugokujin desu". Now, "desu" is here just to express politeness. If you want to sound casual, you can drop the "desu". So then "chuugokujin desu" (polite form) becomes "chuugokujin" (casual form). Remember you should always be polite to people older than you, to people who have a higher social status than you and to elders. It would also be a good idea to be polite to people who you just met.


I think the inly reason I got this is because I know some Chinese XD


Should there be a の between 中国 and 人 to indicate "Chinese person" rather than "China person"? Or is it just kind of understood contextually?


Contextual... All nationalities (where you were born or where your family are from) are country-name~jin (examples a-me-ri-ka-jin; ni-ho-n-jin). Putting the "no" の in would mean the country possesses the man ... Might sound right for soldiers or something like that.


Different languages not always have the same structure to express the same meaning. Thinking a の might be necessary, is logical from the standpoint of the English language (and some other languages as well) but Japanse does not use it in this context (there will be similar examples in the course later on, assuming they are covered on this site).


It doesn't speak all the words here, I'm just trying all the combinations until I pass it :/


Tip: Whenever you want to express nationality, all you have to do is write the name of the country and add "jin" at the end of the word. Example: Chuugoku - China ChuugokuJIN - Chinese Nihon - Japan NihonJIN - Japanese Furansu - France FuransuJIN - French


But if I say I am Chinese but not from China, will the receiver misunderstood me as someone who lives in China?


我是中国人=私は中国人です=I am Chinese=Je suis Chinoise=Soy china


Is saying 私は中国人です。Also an acceptable form of saying it?


I also got it correct from saying this. I'm assuming it's correct, but they would understand through context if you left it out.


I had the two flipped around. Whay does one set go before the other like that?


Japanese has a different sentence structure: I am Chinese is I Chinese am in Japanese. Here the I is omitted because of context so it's Chinese am. eeee


I always have Yoda in my head to help me remember the word order! E.g Sushi I eat


That makes two of us!


I think that helps, but Yoda seems to be more OSV than SOV.


I said that i am china, not chinese


It isnt showing the right simbol for me


How you do to write in Japanese


You need install a Japanese keyboard input on your computer/phone. It's different for every OS.


I keep reading this in Chinese XD


Is this katakana? Im so confused...


No, it's Kanji and Hiragana.

中国 (ちゅごく) is the Kanji for China (literally translating to middle country, referring to its location). 中 is the Kanji meaning middle, and 国 is the Kanji meaning country.

人 (じん) is the Kanji meaning "a person" (don't confuse its use with (出身 / しゅっしん, which means "to be from"). Using 人 after a country (China in this case) translates to China person, meaning the subject is Chinese.

That means 中国人 translates to Chinese (person).

です translates to "is" in this case. Since we're not given the context of the conversation, it's implied that you're speaking about yourself.


The only comment i read that made sense, ありがと ^_^


I wrote: ちゅうがくじんです。because I am using the keyboard and it said it was wrong :( just because I didn't use the kanji!


You also have a typo ;)

The correct answer is ちゅうくじんです. If that's actually what you typed, and the typo is only in your comment, then you should flag it for the course creators to fix.


Is there no need for the 'I' part in simple sentences like this? Is just left to context, or is there a difference between saying, (私は日本人です) or (日本人です)?


It is very commonly left to context, as are many things in Japanese. There is no real difference between the two sentences you have there, especially if the listener is aware that you are a learner (/non-native speaker). Among native speakers (i.e. not me), I imagine adding 私は, especially if you do it repeatedly in quick succession, makes you seem somewhat self-centered or needy, since you constantly want to make sure the conversation about yourself (even if it already is).


This is the 8th lesson in level 2 and I've only gone over John, Maria and Tanaka of America, China & Japan as origin or home country. WHY MUST WE GO THROUGH 15 LESSONS OF THE SAME THING? Why can't we learn other names or countries yet? Other introductory attributes? My goodness. If level 3 starts these same lessons over again, I'm shedding my completionist trait.


Calm down. Learning anything, particularly a new language, requires repetition. Some would argue 15 lessons of the same thing is not enough. Others may find learning a language much more difficult than you and take comfort in a slow pace which builds their confidence. For others still, this pace is too fast. Maybe they don't want to learn hiragana, katakana and kanji all at once; it's too much!

Besides, this is one course made for many different people, so why do you expect it to cater to your exact learning speed? I mean, good for you that you want to learn more stuff, but do you realize how self-absorbed you sound? My goodness.


中国しゅっしんです should be acceptable.


That's I'm from china and not I'm Chinese. That's why it's not acceptable.


How is everyone typing the, "中国"? I can get the "中" with 'chuu' kana on my keyboard, but not the, "国." Any advice?

edit: I've found that if I type in "naka koku' or, "naka kuni' that the correct kana will appear. But why? I know it's been somewhat said above, but I still don't totally get the whole "read" and "spoken" (kunyomi & onyomi) concept.


A way to remember would be to say "Chew Goku " since goku is related to chinese. -Where are you from? - Chew Gokuging desu Hope that helps


So this has been bugging for a while now, but does anybody know why Naka is pronounced Chu or vise versa? I really don't understand, thank you!


I find this too hard...


Yes sòóôõöøőő hard no sarcasm its hard!


Proč ke věta I am Japanese. Bez znaku džu ale věta I am Chinese ji musí mít????? Why???


I am confused my answer wasn't there i am a noob im a kid so i am much noob


Why is 中国出身です not accepted?


Because thats I'm from china and not I'm Chinese.


we went from katakana to kanji in 1 lesson. amazing. outstanding. i dont understand ANYTHING.


中国人です。 I am using this space as practice for typing this phrase correctly.


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