Its a rainy Monday here in Tokyo and its time for another random word to discuss. Take a look at the image below.
Recently, I noticed a number of these boards have been erected around Saitama and Kanagawa prefectures. Can you tell who the people in the posters may be? If you said "politicians" you'd be correct. There are many general elections planned for the coming days in areas all across Japan, so today's word is 一般選挙/いっぱんせんきょ/ippansenkyo or " general election". These elections are used to determine representatives for local government offices. As you can see, we are lacking in the gender diversity department up here in Saitama lol. Todays post will be fairly brief, but lets breakdown these kanji.
Aside from the very last kanji, I think this compound is very straightforward. To get a more encompassed understanding of this particular character, I think it would be ideal to take a look at the radicals that compose it. For "挙", we can separate it into top(かんむり/kanmuri) and bottom(あし/ashi). For the かんむり section, we have ツ(katakana "つ/tsu")、一(いち/ichi/one)、and 八(はち/hachi/eight) all stacked atop one another. Not too helpful in determining a well founded meaning, but the あし section does 手/て/te or "hand". Since perople have traditionally used their hands to drop their ballot into a box, perhaps constructing a story around the kanji would help bring forth an image you can then apply to this particular compound. i.e, "People generally select 1 out of 8 candidates to drop into the ballot box." Its a very roundabout method, but it does work for some people.
If you were curious about the Japanese democratic process, you can view this summarized video by Yuta below.
Like I said, short and sweet. Hope you guys learned something cool today! Whats the political process like in your home country? Are young people engaged in politics? Leave your thoughts in the comments below. And as always, dont forget to like and share this post~
Until next time,