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.

Chinese Writing

Woman writing hello in chinese

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.

Japanese Writing

Japanese Calligraphy

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

Stir fry

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 Food

Sushi display on mat with chopsticks

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.

Common Elements

Businesspeople shaking hands

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.