Thursday, 19 July 2012

Loan Words – 外来語

Japanese uses many loans words from other languages, but the opposite is rare. Words like geisha, samurai, karaoke and futon have been used for many years in English-speaking countries. With the recent sushi and anime booms outside Japan, the words otaku, umami and tatami are also being used in English. But one dialect was influenced by Japanese – the Hawai’ian dialect. The flood of Japanese immigrants to Hawai’i began in 1885, and Japanese words were absorbed into the local dialect. For example, shibai (from play or drama, in Japanese; political posturing), benjo (toilet), daikon (Japanese radish) legs and skosh (from sukoshi; a little). Hiroshima dialect had a larger influence, because the majority of immigrants were from Hiroshima Prefecture. One example is habut (habuteru; take offense, lose one’s temper).

日本語には外国語から生まれた言葉は沢山ありますが、反対のケースが少ないです。英語圏で芸者や侍、カラオケ、布団等は昔から使われています。近年の和食とアニメブームの影響で旨味や畳、オタクも英語に普及しています。しかし日本語が影響した方言、ハワイの方言があります。1885年から日本から移民した人が多かったので、現地の英語に日本語からの外来語が多いです。例えば、芝居(政治家が仮面をはめている時に使う)、便所、大根 legs、 skosh(少し)等。特に広島出身の移民が多かった為、広島弁の「はぶている」(腹が立つ)がhabutになったり、西日本の方言からの外来語が多い。

The Japanese version first appeared in the July 2012 issue of the goodspeed monthly newsletter.

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