Author Archive of Jeremiah Bourque


Facts and Futenma

Futenma (kanji: 普天間) is the name of the big American air base on Okinawa that has been the subject of much political controversy in recent years. The current Prime Minister of Japan, Yukio Hatoyama, has decided, under heavy, even overwhelming…

May 28, 2010, by


Japanese Keigo (Respectful Speech)

The Japanese language has the interesting and curious trait of actually varying the forms of verbs used in otherwise normal, standard sentences to convey greater politeness and respect. This is often done in business, particularly in hospitality; however, “polite” speech…

May 1, 2010, by


How To Learn Japanese

There are many schools of thought for how to learn Japanese. Allow me to briefly present mine. #1: Settle On A Goal If your goal is to know a few cool words to impress your friends, you do not need…

April 21, 2010, by


Want To Study At A Japanese University?

If you’d like to study at a Japanese university, read on. If you don’t… read on anyway! You might find this interesting. At the present time, Japan is undergoing a chronic shortage of students for its well-respected universities. (Most of…

April 8, 2010, by


I Am…

An Essay by Jeremiah Bourque Listen to this Article as a Podcast Your browser does not support the audio element. The English language really begins with two words: I am. English verb phrases are defined by two things: what is…

April 5, 2010, by


Sun Tzu: Ancient Wisdom, Relevant Today

Sun Tzu was a general in ancient China, known almost exclusively for writing the book known in the English language as “Sun Tzu’s The Art of War.” This book has been exhaustively studied by great generals of Chinese, Japanese, and…

April 3, 2010, by

Learning English

A Language Carries An Entire Culture On Its Back

I like to say, language begins from personal experience. As little children, we learn from others how to identify objects around us. Repetition of words occurs in the context of what things in the family home are called. Language, however,…

March 29, 2010, by


Japanese Culture: Why “Gaijin” Isn’t So Bad After All

The Japanese concept of 内と外 (uchi to soto; inside & outside) is considered a cultural concept that perpetually keeps the 外人 (gaijin; foreigners) on the outside of society. In some sense, this is entirely correct. However, it is not the…

March 26, 2010, by

Learning English

The Present Perfect, and Present Perfect Continuous

This is my attempt to explain the present perfect tense, and the present perfect continuous tense (a.k.a. the progressive tense), without causing your head to explode. Wish me luck. The present perfect uses this structure: You have grown since the…

March 22, 2010, by


Fundamentals of Japanese

Hello, this is Jeremiah Bourque, head of the Japanese department of Learn Out Live. I want to tell you about the immense progress we have made in a short time, and what value we can offer our students and clients….

March 15, 2010, by


IELTS Speaking Test: The Public Library Issue

I was looking into publicly available information about the types of questions on the speaking portion of the IELTS academic test, which is a test used by universities in the United Kingdom, Australia, and Canada to assess the English language…

March 14, 2010, by


Samurai: Sometimes Warriors, Always Servants

The word “samurai” evolved from the word “saburai,” which itself is rooted in the verb “saburau,” meaning “to serve.” The kanji for samurai, 侍, is composed of two components, or “radicals”: a man (on the left), and a temple (on…

March 13, 2010, by