Essays and Photos to Help You Learn Joyo Kanji
Hello! My name is Eve Kushner. I'm a writer in Berkeley, California. With Joy o' Kanji I aim to write one essay about each of the 2,136 Joyo kanji, the written characters used in daily life in Japan. The essays, which feature wonderful photos, are downloadable in PDF format at an excellent price. The PDFs have a zingy magazine-style layout that enhances the reading experience.
In a way, these essays are profiles. After all, kanji are as complex as humans! Joy o' Kanji essays reveal the character of the characters and the kanji (感じ) of the kanji (漢字)!
The essays provide a deep immersion into the world of each kanji. As you read about how a certain character pops up in wide range of vocabulary words (from the most common to the most unusual and striking), you'll come to understand the nature of that kanji. Learning about the etymology (the way the shape and meaning of the character may have changed over time) will further illuminate its personality and meaning. When you understand deeply, you can remember much more easily.
This project sprang from my infinite curiosity about the written characters that Japanese people use every day. You may know me from my other kanji writing—my book Crazy for Kanji: A Student's Guide to the Wonderful World of Japanese Characters or my blog Kanji Curiosity. To learn more about me and the whole Joy o' Kanji team, see Who We Are.
For a full sense of what Joy o' Kanji has to offer, be sure to check out the following FREE sections of the site: FAQ About JOK, Guide to the PDFs, Radical Terms, Radical Notes, Thematic Explorations, and the glossary. You can also download two free essays on our Join Us page (just look to the right!). Finally, you won't want to miss JOKIA (Joyo Kanji in Action) photo albums, which you can view online. They're quite affordable, but even so there's a free album!