mjj (flemmings) wrote,
mjj
flemmings

The weirdest thing: after a couple of volumes of Hikaru no Go in French, I started thinking in French. Manga kickstarts the third language centres. Howcum?

I'm so used to the idea that I learn languages badly through the eye, by reading and not by speaking, that I never realized before that French is the one exception to that otherwise universal rule. Never mind my four years of high school French, all from a textbook with no labs at all. I remembered as little of that as of my HS chemistry. (Well OK, a bit more than chem, because all the sciences were a bust for me.) My own party line was that French didn't come together for me until I took a night course in '79, and *that* was what did it, with its instant refresher of the HS groundwork. That the course was followed by a trip to France where I actually had to use the language escaped my notice. And that my French always degenerated when at home, in spite of books and tapes, and revived once I was back speaking French in France.

This finally explains why I can't learn French vocab from reading novels- or indeed, why I find reading French novels incredibly difficult- and equally, why listening to French radio doesn't start the language processes going either. I'm not a French reader, or even a universal French listener. My orientation is to everyday conversation, because that's what I learned French with. Manga gives me everyday conversation, and lots of it, and there we are: French comes back to me after, ohh, only about 15 years away.

Hikaru no Go is such an odd thing to be reading in tandem with 100 Ghosts. True to its name, Hikaru is all sunshine and light. Yang-er than this we don't get. I like it-- though I fancy, as with most Jump manga, that I like it better in French than in Japanese. There's something inherently unsympathetic about shounen manga outside Enix's game-based genres; all the Jump series I know give me the same vague oppression of the spirit that Readers' Digest does. Don't ask me why; they just do. Whereas 100 Ghosts is so yin at times I want to open a window or switch on a bright spotlight. OK, OK-- misty moonlight, vague things out the corner of the eye, vaguer dialogue and motivation, passivity, negativity, inertia. I got you. Could I have a little clarity here?

No, I could not. I shall keep on rereading the tanks and extracting a little more certainty and a clearer take each time, and eventually Tonkam will get around to giving me the French version of what's happening. Which may not be accurate but will at least be something to hold on to. Yes. So dépêche-toi, Tonkam- on t'attend.

(And apropos of my icon- damn, I wish I could read whatever Seimei story it was that Ima illustrated. Gramps and his shikigami and Kai and *his* shikigami are such antsy areas in the manga, it'd be nice to see someone with shikigami who knows what he's doing. This doesn't change my vague notion that the story was shikigami x Seimei: since it's impossible to do shikigami seme with 100 Ghosts shikigami, most of whom are bald with horns, I'd like to see it done somewhere. Yes yes, I know Aoarashi seme can be *done*, but probably not IC and doubtless not well.) (Aside from the fact that gluttony can work as a metaphor for lust-- No. No. Shut up and go away. I will *not* think about Aoarashi x Ritsu. Or red-haired youkai x Kagyuu. Even if red-haired youkai x Ritsu is practically canon.)
Tags: 100demons, hikago, ima_ichiko, language
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