Rodney A. Dunham
- Japan Association for Media English Studies
- 時事英語学研究 (ISSN:21861420)
- vol.1993, no.32, pp.179-189, 1993-09-01 (Released:2012-11-13)
Culture and language are interrelated aspects of a society and represent the society's social reality. As differing societies come into contact, they are exposed to different social realities and need to alter their language to accommodate the new elements. Often this is done by adding loanwords. While this phenomenon is common to all languages, the concern here is with the borrowing of Japanese words by English-language mass media.Although individual English speakers who come into direct contact with a foreign culture are most affected, the mass media have a greater influence over the language as a whole. This is due to the increase in intercultural contact as the mass media creates a global community. The media are caught between the languages in that they must use English and yet report on things that are non-English. Closer observation of the media shows that the Japan-based media tend to use more Japanese words than do the media outside of Japan. In this way, one can see how closely language is tied to social reality and that increased cross-cultural contact changes each person's social reality proportionately. Cross-cultural contact through the mass media changes the language in a similar way.