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Japanese VS Western 和と洋

You all probably already know that each kanji not only has a particular reading, but also includes a meaning.
Today we will talk about 和 (wa) and 洋 (you).

They mean:
和 Japanese
洋 Western

and they are used in a variety of different words.

For example:

和室 (washitsu) — 洋室 (youshitsu) → These indicate the type of room.
和食 (washoku) ー 洋食 (youshoku) → These indicate types of food.
和式 (washiki) ー 洋式 (youshiki) → These are often used to talk about toilets. Washiki is the squat type, and youshiki is the seat type.

There are also words that combine the two.
和洋室 (wayoushitsu) → A type of room at hotels etc. with both beds and tatami
和洋折衷 (wayousecchuu) → A combination of Japanese and western foods, used at weddings etc.

Japanese words and kanji that you study by seeing them in everyday life leave a strong impression. It’s a good idea to make your own vocabulary list as you find new words and check the meanings and usages in your lessons!

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