努/pronunciation "tsuto", "do"/mean "exert oneself"

How to study

How to Remember

The Japanese Kanji 努 means "positive," but it comes from a negative story.

 

If you already know some Japanese Kanji, 努 looks like it's made of 3 kanji:  女 (onna) "woman," 又 (mata) "or," 力 (chikara) "power."

 

But there is one more Kanji, 奴 (yatsu) "man."

奴 is a really negative Kanji. For example, 奴隷 (dorei) "slave."

So I feel 奴 has a very despised feeling.

Usually we use 人 (hito) "man" for a normal person.

If we have anyone that we hate, we use 奴 instead of 人 for that person.

 

努 is from 2 Kanji:  奴 and 力.

Long ago, masters controlled slaves with power.

Slaves had to work a lot, even if they didn't want to.

 

Now, we use 努 to mean "I will do my best, even if I don't want to."

This meaning comes from slaves.

 

I know a funny story about 努.

It's a little sexual, but good for memorizing.

This Kanji can be divided into three parts, right? 女 (onna) "woman," 又 (mata) "or," 力 (chikara) "power."

I need to introduce a new Kanji, 股, to explain the story.

股 (mata) means "crotch."

又 and 股 have the same pronunciation and almost the same meaning.

 

So a man giving power (力) to the crotch (股) of a woman (女) is 努力 (doryoku) effort.

 

In Use

This Kanji is usually uesd as verb.

Nobody uses 努 alone normally. It needs Hiragana.

 

When you use 努 with other Kanji, the pronunciation is (do).

努力 (doryoku) "effort."

 

When you use 努 with hiragana, the pronunciation is (tsuto).

問題解決に努める (mondai kaiketsu ni tsutomeru) "I'll try to solve the problem."

理想の実現に努める(risou no jitsugen ni tsutomeru) "I'll strive to realize the ideal."

 

 

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