Wednesday, May 5, 2010
I think that this research topic is a really interesting one. I had never thought about why there might be 2 words for something, one “authentic” Japanese word and one “foreign” Japanese word (like クラス and 授業). I think that it will be very interesting to find out why that is. However, I was just wondering about the format of your research. Will you be simultaneously looking for Engrish and katakana words? Or will you focus on Engrish for the first 2 weeks and then katakana words for the last 2 weeks? I feel that it might be best to focus on only one aspect at a time, as it may become overwhelming to focus of too much.
Something else that I would be interested in, but may be difficult to find, would be who creates the new words. Although it will be nearly impossible to determine who thought up the new word, it may be useful to document where you heard it first.
An interesting source of new or interesting words could be Yang先生’s blog, Japanese Word Watch (http://jww2010.blogspot.com/). This could provide you with new words to investigate, and if you were stuck or needed further elaboration, the author would be easily accessible! Another interesting website I found is http://pinktentacle.com/2009/11/top-60-japanese-words-phrases-of-2009/ which appears to be a list of the most interesting words of 2009. I think NHK or another television station did a report on the most interesting words. It might be interesting to investigate some of the words on the list.
I’m really looking forward to the Engrish portion of your research. I’m interested to see how regional differences change the frequency of Engrish. I agree with your prediction about smaller and non-franchised restaurants having more Engrish. A prediction that I have is that larger, more global cities like Tokyo will have less Engrish because they are exposed to more fluent English speakers.
I was just wondering how the Engrish earns a cringe-worthy rating. Will the clarity of the message factor into the rating? If the message is just confusing, will it have a low rating? How does the Engrish earn a Potato-smiley? I think that a guideline to the criteria being considered would be very helpful.
I’m really looking forward to what you find from your research! If I see any funny engrish signs, I’ll be sure to show you!
By Alexandra Henderson