In some areas it's still the main language used in daily life, in others it's more marginalized, but that's largely due to a generation gap or two that didn't get Basque passed down to them. Most young people in Donostia at least understand Basque and many speak it as well. I see a lot of young parents (early thirties) speaking Basque with their children, so unlike in the Iparralde (northern/French Basque Country) it's very much a young person's language. It's impossible to go around the city without at least noticing Basque, and as you get further away from the larger touristy cities you'll see Basque usage go up immensely, in many areas in Gipuzkoa at least, Basque is the main language you'll hear in the streets.chove wrote:I've been reading *about* Basque in my Spanish course, about how it survived despite Franco's ban on minority languages. How safe would you say the language is these days?
So Basque is definitely not endangered, and it's usage appears to be rising, but for a good majority of the Basque Country, it's not their daily language and most of what goes on here goes on in Spanish. But i think over the next decade or two this is going to change. The first episode of a new TV show "Itxi liburuak" (close your books) came out last night about prehistory in the Basque Country, and one of the things they said was that while they have drawings and archeological findings from prehistory, those are all dead. We only have one thing remaining from European prehistory that survives to this day: the Basque language itself. And it's the duty not just of the Basque people but of all of Europe to preserve and make sure this one remaining treasure continues to survive.
golyplot wrote:I'm curious what things you felt worked well and didn't work well with Japanese.
I've been studying Japanese for three weeks, and am hoping to use a pseudo-immersion focused approach as well, but I haven't started that yet because I feel like I'm still not at the point where listening to even the most basic stuff would be useful. So for now, I'm just trying various study methods and hoping that I'll get there soon. So far, the only one I've really liked was Wanikani, though it seems like it would be largely superfluous for you, since you've already done RRTK.
I liked Wanikani as well, however it felt like falling into the same trap i ran into with Mandarin: learning words/characters individually and out of context. It works and is relatively easy (but boring) but in my opinion it's not the most effective method in the long term, at least not without lots of additional exposure. Learning in context via sentences and phrases, while harder to gather, so far has made studying much more fun. RRTK was boring and i'd hate to do that for all of the characters and words that i'll have to learn in Japanese, even with Wanikani's fun interface. Not to mention i probably should've skipped it altogether as most of the characters were familiar to me already, and in my opinion RRTK isn't meant so much to learn the meanings of words as it is to get your mind around the concept of a character (which i'd already done with Mandarin), coming from my Mandarin experience i just wanted to be thorough.
Another plus for my current method (which is basically the one outlined by MIA) is that cards that are too difficult or i just grow to dislike are either turned into leeches very quickly or suspended, so my main deck is of cards that are interesting and understandable, making doing my reviews very quick and with sentences that i enjoy. I'm still on the beginning side of things (today at 246 cards, only 2 of which are mature) so i've yet to really get overwhelmed by cards. I'm also still reviewing my RRTK deck (generally 10-15 cards a day) and the Tango deck (20-40 cards a day). But i'm not worried about deleting cards or leeches as i know those words and structures will show up again. Doing my HSK decks for Chinese i never would've dreamed of letting a card turn into a leech. I learned all the words from HSK 1-6, but out of context and the end was painful (and i stopped many many times). With Japanese, my idea is to take a slower, more relaxed approach as my end goal isn't really to speak Japanese but to understand it.
Another thing to keep in mind is that currently all of my new cards are audio cards (taken from Hunter X Hunter). Audio cards are much more interesting (but harder to gather), i'm not sure how i'll feel about text only cards when Stage 2 starts. For getting started with sentences, the Tango books are really nice, though i feel like i've been learning more through sentence mining on my own.
EDIT: Also, please keep in mind that i'm very much a beginner in Japanese, i just started last August and have been taking it slow. My main goal is to make studying Japanese sustainable and enjoyable Now off to watch one of Misa's videos!