Grammar Info

N4 Lesson 3: 7/18

とか

Among other things, For example, Such as

For non-exhaustive lists

Structure

Verb (A) + + Verb (B) + (
Noun (A) + + Noun (B) + (

Details

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    Standard

  • 使用域

    一般

About とか~とか

とか is a word that belongs to a unique family of particles in Japanese called listing particles. As the name suggests, these particles are used for listing groups of items that share similarities. とか can be used after verbs, or nouns, to express 'among other things, (A)'.
  • 健康(けんこう)のために野菜(やさい)()とか(みず)()とかています
    For my health, I do things like eat vegetables and drink water.
  • (かめ)とかすっぽんとか美味(おい)んです
    Are things like turtles and snapping turtles delicious?
When multiple things are listed, the last item in the list can (and often does) have とか omitted.
  • かぼちゃとかサツマイモとか白菜(はくさい)とかシイタケ(はい)ている(なべ)()
    I like hot pots that include things like pumpkin, sweet potatoe, cabbage, and shiitake.
Caution
とか is used to list items in a non-exhaustive way. What this means is that the listener will assume that there are other items in the list, apart from what is stated directly. The speaker is just providing a few examples of a (potentially much larger) category.
Fun Fact
As we have seen, とか may be used with verb phrases. This is in contrast to , a similar grammar point that can only be used for listing nouns.
  • 冷蔵庫(れいぞうこ)(なか)あるもの()とかてください
    Eat what's in the refrigerator or something. (Natural Japanese)
  • 冷蔵庫(れいぞうこ)(なか)あるもの()てください
    Eat things in the refrigerator or something. (Unnatural Japanese, as cannot be used with verbs)

Examples

  • (あお)とか水色(みずいろ)()

    I like colors such as blue and light blue.

  • 明日(あした)とか(こん)週末(しゅうまつ)とか(ひま)なら映画(えいが)()()こう

    If you are free tomorrow or, for example this weekend, let's go watch a movie.

  • トム・クルーズとかブラッド・ピットとかかっこいい(おも)

    I think people like Tom Cruise for example, or Brad Pitt are cool.

  • (わたし)色々(いろいろ)フルーツ()だけど(いちご)とか、リンゴとか(きら)です

    I like a variety of fruits, but I don't like (fruits) such as strawberries and apples.

  • 日本(にほん)とか韓国(かんこく)とか()ってみたいです

    I want to go to places such as Japan and Korea.

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とか~とか – Grammar Discussion

Most Recent Replies (11 in total)

  • foodsam

    foodsam

    About 2 years ago

    Hi, is there any differences using や for making non-exhaustive lists instead of とか?

  • Howl_UK

    Howl_UK

    About 2 years ago

    Tae Kim mentions that とか is a more colloquial version of や.
    The BunPro grammar point mentions that とか can be preceded by a verb phrase, whereas や cannot.

  • foodsam

    foodsam

    About 2 years ago

    Thank you.

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