In the previous episode we discussed honorifics, for which there was almost no bias towards gender. Today however we discuss the various ways to say “You” and “I”, or what you technical people might refer to as pronouns, for which the majority of these words are gender-biased. While some people do cross the gender line, as a foreigner I would suggest avoiding crossing the gender line when you speak or you will come across as being ignorant of Japanese. And as always in Japanese, there are various levels of politeness and to not be polite is to be rude so please be aware to speak casually only with close family and friends.
Different ways to say I, me, myself, mine, my, we, us, our, ours: watashi vs. watakushi (atashi vs. atakushi), jibun, ware, ore, boku, kochira vs. kocchi, uchi.
Different ways to say you, your, he, his, she, hers, them, they, their, theirs: anata vs. anta, kimi, omae, otaku, sochira vs. socchi, ano kata, kanojyo, kare, yatsu, koitsu vs. soitsu vs. aitsu.
Religion in Japan: Shinto-ism and Buddhism (mostly in English to help explain to those who are not strong in Japanese)
bukkyo – Buddhism. 仏教 [ぶっきょう]
jinjya – shrine (Shinto). 神社 [じんじゃ]
kitsune – fox, shape-shifting animal in Japanese mythology. 狐 [きつね]
kyoukai – church (Christian). 協会 [きょうかい]
(o)jizou – Jizo, guardian deity of children (Shinto). (お)地蔵 [(お)じぞう]
otera – temple (Buddhist). お寺 [おてら]
shintou – Shinto. 神道 [しんとう]
Japanese pronouns entry at Wikipedia
Japanese Language: Personal Pronouns
Shinto entry at Wikipedia
Buddhism entry at Wikipedia
Kitsune entry at Wikipedia
Episode transcript PDF (Japanese portion includes furigana) (interviews not transcribed)
Episode 5 – You and I