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O'Neill, Tom (2021) 'Koronashokku: Loanwords in Japanese and the Covid-19 pandemic.' SOAS Working Papers in Linguistics, 20. pp. 121-141.

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Foreign loanwords have come to form a substantial portion of the contemporary Japanese vocabulary. While many studies have been undertaken on language borrowing, the phenomenon of global events, disasters and socio-economic movements precipitating their inception is underexplored. The purpose of this paper is to build on the prior research on well-established loanwords by examining novel usage in the specific context of the Covid-19 pandemic. Data was obtained using tweeted replies to coronavirus-related articles in order to identify which novel loanwords have come into use due to Covid-19. Subsequently, to determine comprehension rates and attitudes, a survey was carried out using 121 participants drawn from members of the Japanese public. It found a low comprehension rate of the novel loanwords, particularly amongst participants over 60 years of age. Drawing from these results, the utility of novel loanwords related to Covid-19 is called into question.

Item Type: Journal Article
Keywords: Linguistic borrowing, English loanwords, Japanese language, comprehension, Twitter, Covid-19, language policy
SOAS Departments & Centres: Departments and Subunits > School of Languages, Cultures & Linguistics > Department of Linguistics
ISSN: 14730855
Copyright Statement: © 2021, the author.
DOI (Digital Object Identifier):
Date Deposited: 04 Oct 2021 12:16

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