Japan's Built-in Lexicon of English-based Loanwords

Author: Frank E. Daulton

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Multilingual Matters
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Throughout the world, the mother tongue fundamentally affects second language acquisition. Japanese contains thousands of loanwords, many based on the most useful types of English vocabulary. This book examines gairaigo -- Western loanwords in Japanese -- and its effect on L2 English acquisition. The first part introduces Japanese lexical borrowing. The second part resolves the "paradox of cognates" and clarifies the effect of gairaigo on English acquisition. The third part assesses the loanword cognates in Japanese that correspond to high-frequency and academic English. The fourth part focuses on barriers to utilizing this L1 resource. The epilogue presents general principles and suggestions for using gairaigo in teaching, and the appendix features useful lists of English/Japanese cognates. There are important pedagogic implications for wherever language contact has occurred.

This book is a valuable contribution to SLA research. Apart from the obvious target of the book, SLA researchers and teachers anywhere in the world, it will be of particular interest to the Japanese community and to Westerners interested in Japanese language and culture. It is not easy to write a book appealing to audiences as disparate as this, but Daulton has managed to do this very well. He writes clearly and lucidly and makes good use of his teaching experience in Japan.

Frank E. Daulton is an Associate Professor at Ryukoku University in Kyoto. Born in the United States, he has taught EFL in Japan for nearly two decades. His academic interests include vocabulary acquisition and language transfer. He holds degrees in Journalism (University of Missouri) and Education (Temple University). And in 2004, he completed his doctorate in Applied Linguistics at Victoria University of Wellington under vocabulary expert Paul Nation. He resides on the shore of Lake Biwa with his wife and three children.



PART 1: Japan's Importation of English

1. The Assimilation of English into Japanese - A Historical and Linguistic Overview

2. Today's Generation of Gairaigo

PART 2: Gairaigo and Language Acquisition

3. Resolving the Paradox of Cognates

4. The Effect of Loanwords in Japanese on the Learning of English

PART 3: The Built-in Lexicons

5. Common Loanword Cognates for High-frequency and Academic English

6. Quantifying the Overlap and Quality of Japanese/English Cognates

PART 4: Exploiting Japanese Loanword Cognates

7. Barriers to Accessing Cognates

8. Extending Word Knowledge Within Word Families

Epilogue – New Horizons


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