The Chinese and Japanese cultures are frequently confused by Westerners and thought of as similar. Although there are similarities between these two Eastern cultures, there are many more differences.
The Chinese language is a complex and difficult language to study. There are over 200 dialects used throughout China and Hong Kong, and learning to write the language requires amazing skill and memorization.
The Japanese written language is derived from the Chinese language. This style of Japanese writing is referred to as Kanji. However, the spoken language is entirely different from Chinese.
Chinese food is different depending on which region of China you are in. Shanghai-style cooking is more spicy and is frequently associated with seafood. Cantonese-style cooking is blander and can be easier on the Western palate.
Japanese cuisine is famed for its seafood. There is sushi, which is a small amount of rice topped with raw fish. There is also sashimi, which is raw seafood with no rice. In the Kobe region, high-grade steak is a major delicacy.
Anyone who can read either the Chinese or Japanese language can usually see the similarities between the characters and interpret the text. Both cultures share rice and tofu as a common food staple. Both cultures also share a strong work ethic, frequently working six-day weeks.
Susanna Lo is an established writer, director and producer who won awards in The Berlin and Montreal film festivals. She is a member of PEN and WGA. Her parents worked for the airline and hotel industries and she's been traveling since infancy. Lo has lived in Europe, Asia, South America and North America and speaks five languages. She holds a Bachelor of Arts in communication.