[tab: English]

In this episode of Japanese-on-the-Move we are pleased to introduce you to Simon Rodwell. Simon describes himself as a regular Australian guy. For him, that involves speaking Japanese, having a wide network of Japanese friends, travelling to Japan as often as possible, and – as this interview goes live on Japanese-on-the-Move in October 2011 – getting married to a Japanese woman. Chinami Nakabayashi, the love of his life from Ise City in central Japan, lives with Simon in multicultural Sydney and you will also get to meet her on Japanese-on-the-Move in the near future.

How does a ‘regular Australian guy’ come to be a ‘Japanese on the Move’? On Language-on-the-Move, we have often written about how easily Australians seem to get trapped in a monolingual mindset. Simon’s story reminds us that it doesn’t have to be like that and points to the importance of foreign language education in school. Simon started learning Japanese back at high school. Hosting a Japanese exchange student, going on exchange to Japan and continuing Japanese at university all just followed naturally from that. Today, Japanese and Japan are an inseparable part of Simon’s identity and make this, after all, maybe not-so-regular Australian guy who he is.

[tab: 日本語]

今回のJapanese-on-the-Moveの エピソードに登場するのはサイモン・ロッドウェルさん。「普通のオージー」と自称するロッドウェルさんは、日本語を流暢にしゃべり、日本人の友人を沢山持 ち、日本には何度も訪れている。彼のインタビューが掲載される2011年10月には最愛のパートナーである伊勢出身の中林千奈美さんとご結婚された。現在 多文化な町シドニーで生活されるお二人で、後に中村さんもJapanese-on-the-Moveに登場する。

「普通のオージー」である彼がなぜ「Japanese-on-the-Move」になったのか?イングリッド・ピラー高橋君江が運営するブログ・ウェブサイト Language-on-the-Move では、オーストラリア人の「monolingual mindset(単 一言語マインドセット-英語オンリー的な考え)」について論じてきた。ロッドウェルさんの体験談から外国語学習の重要性を学び取る事が出来る。高校時代に 日本語と出会った後、日本人留学生を受け入れ、本人自らも留学生として来日し、大学進学後も日本語を学び続けた。そして現在、日本と日本語は彼のアイデン ティティーの大切な一部となっている。そんなロッドウェルさんには「普通のオージー」という自称は当てはまらないかもしれない。

[tab:END]

Author Kimie Takahashi 高橋君江

高橋 君江 is Visiting Associate Professor at International Christian University, Tokyo. Before joining ICU in 2014, she was Lecturer at the Graduate School of English at Assumption University of Thailand (2011 – 2014) and Postdoctoral Research Fellow at Macquarie University, Australia (2007 and 2011). Kimie is an Honorary Associate in the Department of Linguistics, and continues to co-supervise several PhD students with Ingrid Piller at Macquarie University.

More posts by Kimie Takahashi 高橋君江
  • SuN

    It is not Languages and Nationalities that determine who people are but Places, Live styles and Thoughts are the important things that indicate who we are. In Thailand, there are many foreigners who live and learn how to stay in the multicultural country like this. In addition, Many Thai people go abroad and live in other countries. They change their live styles and thoughts and have to learn new multicultural places. I believe that we sometimes have some reasons for changing and learning new things and make them be common in our lives.

  • khan

    Fantastic life story. Very inspirational. Rodwell has discovered new horizons of human expressions, linkages between cultures and he has been considerably successful in breaking the monolingual mindset. Great

    Japanese on the move is doing a wonderful job by allowing us the opportunity to learn through concrete examples on language and its intersections with socio-cultural and political constructs. Thanks Kimie and Ingrid.