Ciara Marshall '16
Taking the "Japanese Through Film" Course
I took the JPN 204, Japanese Through Film, course last semester. This class taught Japanese language and culture by watching several Japanese movies including “Shall We Dance?," “I Wish," “Train Man," “Spirited Away" and “Ponyo.” Our professor, Dr. Hamako Furuhata-Turner, professor of Japanese, gave us packets that went along with the movies. We watched the movie for about 30 minutes at the beginning of the class, while the second half was spent talking about the questions in the packet and writing down the answers.
This class helped me improve my Japanese in many ways. It helped me to start learning to recognize Japanese words by listening to the actors as well as my professor and peers when we discussed the questions and answers in Japanese. The class increased my knowledge of Japanese culture by requiring students to do some research about each movie beforehand and through watching the ways in which different ideas were portrayed in the movies. My Japanese writing skills and vocabulary improved after answering the questions in the packet for each movie in Japanese and after having vocabulary quizzes at the beginning of each class. Overall, my Japanese language listening, writing, and reading skills as well as my knowledge of Japanese culture and vocabulary, increased after taking this well-rounded, high-level Japanese course. I highly encourage all students pursuing a Japanese Major at the University of Mount Union to take this class.