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Is 'baka' considered a rude word?

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Is 'baka' considered a rude word? 2007/8/1 14:46
Do Baka means stupid in japan? I wonder if it will be rude to say someone baka..or is it more like a fun kind of casual remark to japanese? If we are saying it in a joking manner will it offend anyone?
by lsycinderalla  

... 2007/8/2 15:05
Yes "baka" means "stupid," "fool," "silly" in Japanese.
Unless you are saying it among VERY close friends/buddies and CLEARLY VERY jokingly, I think it will offend people.
by AK rate this post as useful

Baka 2007/8/2 15:10
lsycinderalla,

While it can be said in jest to people you know, in my experience, it is slightly stronger than "idiot" in English - more like "bloody idiot".

by Dave in Saitama rate this post as useful

omg... 2007/8/2 16:23
oh my god...I didnt know that. I thought its just like saying "idiot / stupid" in a casual manner. Anyway I said 'ba...ka.." to my friend. He replied something like "im baka?", "tabun Kazu wa baka desu. hehe"..something like that..so i kind of assume he's not offended (-_-)" I guess i wont use it next time! haha..
by lsycinderalla rate this post as useful

. 2007/8/3 04:11
Yup, you definitely don't want to used that word especially in Kansai area.
by Miki-chan rate this post as useful

In some areas... 2007/8/3 11:28
In the older parts of Tokyo and some other rare areas, "baka" or actually "bakayaro" is used as a common word which means almost as nothing as "hey". Directors Takeshi Kitano and Yukio Ninagawa were brought up in those environments. "We say 'Good morning bakayaro'", said Ninagawa on TV. So you might notice it in their scripts as well.

However, this "dialect" is very rare, so you yourself should never use the term unless you're very confident about it. Just keep in mind when you see movies and drama that "baka" may not always imply that the other party is truly idiotic.

Maybe it's like the way some people use extremely offensive terms like "Hey MF, wassup?" or "Good ole SOB"

by Uco rate this post as useful

"Baka" culture and "Aho" culture 2007/8/3 20:22
It may be somewhat off the topic, but it reminds me of my own experience when I was a student of a university.

I was born and raised in Nagoya, central part of Japan and for me "calling BAKA" was nothing. I even felt affection when I was called BAKA by my friends (of course in a casual manner!).

Then after high-school, I moved to Kyoto to continue my education. I was lucky to have many friends, some from my birth-town, others from Osaka/Kyoto.

Since "BAKA" was nothing for me, I sometimes used it to tease my friends. But I found they reacted completely differently. Those who're from Nagoya(and Tokyo) didn't care much and simply laughed out (exactly as what I had expected) while those from Osaka/Kyoto made a face.

I learned that for Osakanian/Kyotonian, to be called "BAKA" really hurts them. Interestingly, they asked me to call them "AHO."

Well, meaning-wise, there seems no big difference between "BAKA" and "AHO." But, for Osakanian/Kyotonian, AHO is OK while BAKA is not (mainly because they watch comedians using AHO a lot )

And for people in Nagoya, including me, BAKA is OK while AHO is ....NO!

That's probably one of the biggest culture shock I had in my life.

by J Lady rate this post as useful

a.... 2007/8/3 22:59
oh! my friend is from Tokyo too..and he doesnt seem to mind when i call him 'baka'..hehehe~
by Xinderalla rate this post as useful

. 2007/8/4 01:47
I'm surprised that there is such a discrepancy in reaction by Japanese people of different regions.

From my personal experience with most friends AHO seemed to be less intense than BAKA. Everyone accepted it as a jokingly kind of tease whereas some others took BAKA very literally.

To think of it the other way around, if you have to choose, do you prefer to be called an Idiot, a Moron or Stupid?

Personally if someone called me a moron I'd be fuming. Less so with being called stupid. However if someone called me an idiot I wouldn't raise an eyebrow I'll automatically think it was just a bit of a tease when I do something stupid (but not really enjoy being called stupid even when doing stupid things).

I do wonder if other English speaking countries or cultures disagree with me though now that I think about it more.

by Blanc rate this post as useful

Baka 2007/8/4 10:29
Our Japanese exchange student would affectionately call us 'baka'. She said it meant 'kind of crazy'.
by D rate this post as useful

so how do you say 'stupid' politely? 2007/8/4 13:10
People have told me not to use 'baka' but I have not been able to find out how to say something is stupid - say, I went to a movie, and I want to say, 'that movie was so stupid'...how can I do that? Or if I want to poke fun at myself, when I tell people the 'stupid' things I say in japanese; is there a milder form of 'baka'?
by Spendthrift rate this post as useful

... 2007/8/4 14:01
When saying something like "That movie was silly/stupid," you could say "Ano eiga wa bakarashikatta." "bakarashii" is an adjective that describes something "looking silly," "looking stupid," etc. Or you could also say "kudaranai," another adjective with a similar meaning - a bit more like "trashy" "not worth it." So if you say this about a movie, that means you thought it was a waste of your time.
If you want to say "I said something stupid," you could say "Baka na koto wo itte shimatta," ("baka na koto" = stupid things).

It's when "baka" is directed at someone, it can be perceived as quite blunt/strong.

by AK rate this post as useful

bakarashii 2007/8/17 02:08
So is bakarashii a NA adjective like "kirei" or is it an I adjective like "oishi"...so for example would you say:
"bakarashii eiga" or "bakarashii na eiga" (stupid/silly movie)
???
by 4mac4 rate this post as useful

Aho pun 2007/8/17 03:01
I'm going off on a tangent...

In Fukui dialect, people say "Ah, hou" or "Ah, hou ka" instead of Ah sou, or a sou ka (I see).

So, when my coworker and I talked to each other, sometimes we liked to tease each other, saying in response to a silly statement or joke "Aho ka?" doubly meaning "is that so?" and "are you stupid?"

It was one of our favorite jokes...

by kyarinchan rate this post as useful

to 4macr, 2007/8/17 09:38
4mac4,
"bakarashii" is an I adjective like "oishii."
In my second example in my earlier post, If you want to say "I said something stupid," you could say "Baka na koto wo itte shimatta," ("baka na koto" = stupid things). , the "baka na" is a NA adjective.
by AK rate this post as useful

baka na and bakarashi 2007/8/17 17:54
Thanks AG.
yes I was wondering about the "na" in your example.
Thank you for your explanation.
by 4mac4 rate this post as useful

to 4mac4, 2007/8/18 17:23
Please note that there are two "i" at the end of both: "oishii" and "bakarashii."
by AK rate this post as useful

tangent 2007/8/18 17:29
sorry, but i was wondering if you call something a friend likes "baka" or just plain say you don't like it, you think they'll be offended like Americans can be sometimes? I know that if I tell my little sister the shows she watches on Disney/Nickelodeon and some of the music she likes (like Avril) is really bad... she gets mad.
by Miko rate this post as useful

BAKA YARO 2007/8/19 00:28
hahahahaha... it mostly depends on tone of voice.. like say NANI in a strong voice and it means a whole lot more than "what"..... so until your next KANCHO...
by david rate this post as useful

baka is also used in my country 2007/8/19 09:50
am from somali, we use the baka as insult but is not a strong word, we use it when someone does something stupid, they should know it,
it like you walked in to a car but you know it was coming, the moment the car hit him and he crying in pain, you say BAAKAA it should of happaned, if you know he not going to dead say it, if he is got to dead, not say it, we also use it same way as the japanese, i love the word baka
by abdi rate this post as useful

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