Be Able to Identify and Use Japanese Gestures.
Not all gestures are universally alike nor understood. Do the Japanese shrug their shoulders and hold up their arms when they don’t know something? Does the thumbs up gesture have another usage in Japan? Is there a gesture to signal for the bill when dining out? How and when should you bow? What are the postures for standing and sitting? It's all inside Japanese Gestures!
Japanese Gestures contains over 140 beautifully photographed gestures, high-quality audio descriptions and guidance on how gestures are used.
Japanese Gestures is your starting point to identifying and using Japanese gestures. Know what to do and say. Express yourself with gestures and communicate more effectively in Japan!
Start Identifying & Using Japanese Gestures!
Look and Sound Like a Native in Japan.
Gestures are the intentional movements of a body part – usually the head or hands – to express an idea or meaning. While gestures are utilized to emphasize a spoken word or phrase (saying “goodbye” and waving one’s hand), they’re also used as a substitute for verbal communication (non-verbally saying “goodbye” by waving one’s hand).
Common Gestures • Positioning Gestures • Finger Counting Gestures • Gestures for Emotions & Feelings • Gestures for Conversing • Gestures for Eating & Drinking • Gestures for Giving & Receiving • Gestures for Bowing • Postures for Standing & Sitting
Imagine You're in Japan...
Sapporo Beer Restaurant
You’re at the Sapporo Beer Restaurant in Hokkaidō. You're with 3 Japanese friends, but the server left 4 beers. One of your friends wonders who ordered two beers. It was you. What do you do? What do you say? Find out on page 45.
You're at a fireworks competition in Aomori. You’ve never seen such an amazing display of fireworks before. It feels as if you’re in a dream because it’s so beautiful, so perfect — it’s a surreal moment! What do you do? What do you say? Find out on page 3.
Ryougoku Sumo Hall
You're at the Ryougoku Sumo Hall in Tokyo. The sumo match just ended and you’re talking with a group of people sitting beside you. You want to invite them for a drink and make new Japanese friends. What do you do? What do you say? Find out on page 123.
You're climbing Mt. Fuji in Shizuoka. As you ascend the mountain, the English-speaking guide asks where you're from. You tell him in perfect Japanese where you're from. He smiles and says that you’re pronunciation is fantastic! You want to respond by emphasizing your modesty just as the Japanese would. What do you do? What do you say? Find out on page 53.
You're at a famous takoyaki stand in Kyōto. It's a hot and humid July afternoon. You and your friend are dripping with sweat while waiting in line. Your friend begins to complain about the wait, complain about the weather and complain about everyone's order. What do you do? What do you say? Find out on page 11.
You're at Itsukushima Shrine in Hiroshima.
You want to take a picture of the gate at sunset, but you have to cut through dozens of people in order to get the perfect shot in time. What do you do? What do you say? Find out on page 25.
Udon Noodle Shop
You’re at a Sanuki udon noodle shop in Kagawa. When your food arrives, you slide your bowl of noodles toward you, but suddenly realize the bowl's hotter than you imagined. What do you do? What do you say? Find out on page 42.
You're at a beachside restaurant in Okinawa. After a satisfying dish of gōyā chanpurū, you’re ready to walk the beach. First, though, you want to signal to the server that you’d like the check. What do you do? What do you say? Find out on page 14.
Where are You?
Imagine another situation. How might you use Japanese Gestures to emphasize a word or phrase or to non-verbally communicate with others? What do you do? What do you say? Find out in Japanese Gestures!
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