This book throws light on ideologies, practices and sociocultural developments currently shaping language use in Japan by departing from the more common investigation of language in private contexts and examining aspects of the language found in a range of significant public spaces, from the material (an international airport, the streets of Tokyo, the JSL classroom in Japan and courtrooms) to the electronic (television dramas, local government web pages and cyberspace).
Through its study of the language encountered in such settings, the volume provides a deeper understanding of multifaceted aspects of linguistic diversity, both in terms of the use of languages other than Japanese and of issues relating to the Japanese language itself. The variety of theoretical approaches brought to bear by contributing authors ensures a substantial intellectual contribution to the literature on language in contemporary Japan.
This book was published as a special issue of Japanese Studies.
Table of Contents
1. Introduction: Language in Public Spaces in Japan Nanette Gottlieb 2. Public Signs as Narrative in Japan Patricia Wetzel 3. Language Choices at Naha Airport Patrick Heinrich 4. Multilingualism in Japanese Public Space – Reading the Signs Peter Backhaus 5. Local Government Websites in Japan: International, Multicultural, Multilingual? Tessa Carroll 6. Playing with Language in E-Japan: Old Wine in New Bottles Nanette Gottlieb 7. Finding Mr. Right: New Looks at Gendered Modernity in Japanese Televised Romances Debra J. Occhi, Cindi L. SturtzSreetharan and Janet S. Shibamoto-Smith 8. Who is to say ‘Your Japanese is incorrect’? Reflection on ‘Correct’ Japanese Usages by Learners of Japanese Chihiro Kinoshita-Thomson 9. Partial Non-Use of Interpreters in Japanese Criminal Court Proceedings Ikuko Nakane
Nanette Gottlieb FAHA is Professor Emeritus of Japanese Studies and ARC Professorial Fellow in the Japan Program, School of Languages and Comparative Cultural Studies at the University of Queensland in Brisbane. Her recent work includes Language and Society in Japan (2005) and Linguistic Stereotyping and Minority Groups in Japan (2006). She is currently working on a five-year study of the challenges to language policy in Japan brought about by both increased immigration and new technologies, with a book to be published by Cambridge University Press in 2011.