February 1, 2010

動画「日本とアメリカの住所の書き方の違い」 / Japanese system of addressing





太田 道灌が皇居(江戸城)を建設した時か、徳川家康が改修した時に四角い敷地にして、平城京のように区画整備をきちんとしてくれていれば良かったのにと常々思っていましたが、これからは外国人にこの動画を見せれば説明の手間が省けるので助かります(笑)


"Japanese Addresses and Other Opposites"

The first thing foreign people ask me when they come to Japan is about the complicated train route and addresses in Japan.
This video gives you the best explanation about the addresses in Japan.In Japan, streets don't have names. And blocks have numbers. Streets are just the empty space in between the blocks.

I think this system of addressing is rooted in Japanese culture. The concept of starting with the biggest, and then zooming into the individual scene (prefecture, city, ward, neighbourhood, block, building, room# and finally name) is used in many Japanese society.

For example, family name comes before the given name. Yoko Ono, wife of John Lennon, is "Ono Yoko". This means you're a part of the family first, and an individual second.

In other instances, today, Feb 1 2010, is "2010 Feb 1" in Japan. It always goes biggest to smallest, YYYY-MM-DD. I'm not sure why but I believe the reason is to sort the list more easier in order.



  1. Oh! That's gonna be a problem. Would I easily get lost in Japan then?

    I guess this is where Yoda (Starwars) got the idea how to speak. He always speak the other way round. Jokes! :)

    It's good to be back reading your posts again Hayden. I hope you're doing just fine. ;)

  2. Hi Didz, your picture has been changed! Cute!

    It isn't necessarily just a joke Didz :)
    George Lucas is regarded as friendly toward Japan and he said that Jedi was heavily affected by the Japanese culture.
    Jedi wear Judo uniforms, and the origin of Lightsaber is Japanese samurai sword.
    So we might say that the way Yoda speaks comes from Japanese culture:)

    And I also might say that the way he speaks is sometimes hard to understand for nonnative English speakers (like me!) :)