Collocation Differences between Adjectives in English and English Adjective Loan Words in Japanese

| March 29, 2015

Title: Collocation Differences between Adjectives in English and English Adjective Loan Words in Japanese

 

Masatoshi Shoji

Abstract

This study examined collocational differences between seven English fashion-related adjectives and their equivalent loan word forms in Japanese: elegant,fashionable, feminine, stylish, chic, boyish, and mannish. Corpus research was conducted by using the Bank of English for English and the Sketch Engine for Japanese. Additionally, for three of the adjectives, feminine, boyish and mannish, and their corresponding loan words, survey questionnaires were developed to examine both native English and Japanese speakers’ perceptions of semantic prosody of collocational examples using these words. The research explored whether the English adjectives underwent semantic changes as they were adopted into Japanese, whether English loan words are used instead of Japanese near synonyms to fill lexical gaps in Japanese, and, for selected words, whether the semantic prosody can change between English and Japanese. These questions were all answered affirmatively. In particular, semantic change occurred for six of the seven adjectives; the semantic prosody of the selected adjectives also tended to be more positive in Japanese than in English. The research also sought to understand if collocational differences between English and Japanese affect English as a foreign language (EFL) learners, however this question was not able to be confidently answered.

 

 

Category: 2015 Thesis, Thesis