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The Ideology of KokugoNationalizing Language in Modern Japan$
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Yeounsuk Lee

Print publication date: 2009

Print ISBN-13: 9780824833053

Published to Hawaii Scholarship Online: November 2016

DOI: 10.21313/hawaii/9780824833053.001.0001

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The Ideology of Hyōjungo

The Ideology of Hyōjungo

(p.155) Chapter 10 The Ideology of Hyōjungo
The Ideology of Kokugo

Lee Yeounsuk

University of Hawai'i Press

This chapter outlines the concept of “standard Japanese” (hyōjungo). The term hyōjungo carries a special emotional connotation, as it implies a crusade against dialect. Academic discussions about hyōjungo today have to be careful not to summon up the public's neurosis about their experience. Thus the term hyōjungo was gradually replaced by kyōtsūgo (common Japanese) for the transparent reason of obliterating unpleasant memories. The Kokugogaku jiten (Kokugogaku Dictionary) of 1955 defines kyōtsūgo as “the common language, which can be used for exchanging ideas everywhere in a country,” and “hyōjungo” as “the ideal kokugo, constructed by refinement and control of kyōtsūgo according to a certain standard.” Therefore, strictly speaking, these two terms refer to different concepts. Nonetheless, kyōtsūgo was allowed to replace the term hyōjungo, and the chapter details the reasons as to why.

Keywords:   kyōtsūgo, hyōjungo, standard Japanese, dialects, common language, hyōjungo ideology

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