Language Policy in Japan

The Challenge of Change

Language Policy in Japan

Over the last thirty years, two social developments have occurred that have led to a need for change in language policy in Japan. One is the increase in the number of migrants needing opportunities to learn Japanese as a second language, the other is the influence of electronic technologies on the way Japanese is written. This book looks at the impact of these developments on linguistic behaviour and language management and policy, and at the role of language ideology in the way they have been addressed. Immigration-induced demographic changes confront long cherished notions of national monolingualism and technological advances in electronic text production have led to textual practices with ramifications for script use and for literacy in general. The book will be welcomed by researchers and professionals in language policy and management and by those working in Japanese Studies.


"Still, Gottlieb has collected and presented much worthwhile information about current language policy in Japan and its immediate language planning needs."
--J. Marshall Unger, Journal of Japanese Studies

'Gottlieb raises timely questions regarding Japan's language policy - in terms of both ideological stance and practical implementation.' Patricia J. Wetzel, Portland State University

'A far-reaching, detailed and highly accessible analysis of how Japan's language policy is adapting to the impact of technological change and the challenges brought by an increasingly multilingual, multicultural population.' Tessa Carroll, author of Language Planning and Language Change in Japan