An Introduction to Japanese Linguistics / Edition 2

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An Introduction to Japanese Linguistics gives a comprehensive account of Japanese linguistics, covering phonetics, phonology, morphology, syntax, semantics, language variation including dialectal variation and gender differences, and language acquisition. The author introduces linguistic notions and terminology and discusses theoretical analyses of linguistic phenomena in the language. This text serves as a descriptive source and a theoretical foundation for students and scholars in linguistics as well as those interested in the Japanese language more generally. It is also intended to be used as a pedagogical tool to provide basic notions and terminology in linguistics, and to introduce students to linguistic argumentation.

This new edition offers an entirely new chapter on language acquisition which includes experimental research and its implications for phonological, syntactic, and semantic issues. The coverage of morphology has been expanded to include new sections on nominalization and compounding, and a new discussion of pragmatics and discourse analysis is incorporated into coverage of semantics. Each chapter is also supported by exercises exploring descriptive and theoretical issues, and by updated reading lists which introduce students to the research literature.

About the Author:
Natsuko Tsujimura is Professor of Japanese Linguistics at Indiana University

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"Teachers and students of Japanese will find the rich set of data and the clear and user-friendly descriptions invaluable in understanding the structure of the Japanese Language." Professor Shigeru Miyagawa, Massachesetts Institute of Technology

"This book is an excellent invitation to Japanese Linguistics not only for students of Japanese but also for native speakers who are interested in the structure of their own language. As it includes insightful discussion of the major theoretical issues and detailed bibliographical information, it is also a valuable reference for theoretical linguistics." Mamoru Saito, University of Connecticut

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781405110655
  • Publisher: Wiley
  • Publication date: 9/22/2006
  • Series: Blackwell Textbooks in Linguistics Series
  • Edition description: REV
  • Edition number: 2
  • Pages: 520
  • Product dimensions: 6.80 (w) x 9.70 (h) x 1.20 (d)

Meet the Author

Natsuko Tsujimura is Professor of Japanese Linguistics at Indiana University. Her publications include The Handbook of Japanese Linguistics (Blackwell, 1999), and she has published extensively on various aspects of lexical semantics.

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Table of Contents

List of Figures, Tables, and Maps.

Preface to the Second Edition.


1. Introduction.

Suggested Readings.

2. Phonetics.

1. Phonetic Inventory.

1.1. Place/Manner of Articulation and Voicing.

1.2. Phonetic Inventory of English – Consonants.

1.3. Phonetic Inventory of Japanese – Consonants.

1.4. Phonetic Inventory of English – Vowels.

1.5. Phonetic Inventory of Japanese – Vowels.


Suggested Readings.


3. Phonology.

1. Phonological Rules in Japanese.

1.1. Devoicing of High Vowels.

1.2. Nasal Assimilation.

1.3. Alveolar Alternations.

1.4. Alternations.

1.5. Digression on the Phoneme Status of.

1.6. Verbal Conjugation Rules.

1.7. Rule Ordering.

2. Sequential Voicing – "Rendaku".

3. Mora vs. Syllable.

3.1. Speech Errors.

3.2. Language Games: "Babibu" Language.

4. Accentuation in Japanese.

4.1. Stress vs. Pitch.

4.2. Accentuation in Japanese.

4.3. Mora vs. Syllable.

4.4. Accentuation of Long Nominal Compounds.

4.5. Accentuation of Short Nominal Compounds.

4.6. Accentual Variation Among Endings.

5. Mimetics.

6. Loan Words.

7. Casual Speech and Fast Speech.

8. Length Requirements.


Suggested Readings.


4. Morphology.

1. Parts of Speech Categories.

1.1. Nouns.

1.2. Verbs.

1.3. Adjectives.

1.4. Adverbs.

1.5. Postpositions.

1.6. Case Particles.

1.7. Adjectival Nouns.

1.8. Verbal Nouns.

2. Morpheme Types.

3. Word Formation.

3.1. Affixation.

3.2. Compounding.

3.3. Reduplication.

3.4. Clipping.

3.5. Borrowing.

4. Head.

5. Issues in Japanese Morphology (1): Transitive and Intransitive Verb Pairs.

6. Issues in Japanese Morphology (2): Nominalization.

7. Issues in Japanese Morphology (3): Compounding.

7.1. Background.

7.2. N–V Compounds.

7.3. V–V Compounds.


Suggested Readings.


5. Syntax.

1.Syntactic Structures.

1.1. Syntactic Constituency.

1.2. Phrase Structures.

1.3. Phrase Structure Rules.

1.4. The Notion of Head.

1.5. Subcategorization.

1.6. Structural Relations.

2. Transformational Rules.

2.1. Yes–No Question.

2.2. WH-Movement.

3. Word Order and Scrambling.

3.1. Scrambling Phenomenon.

3.2. Configurationality.

3.3. Evidence for the Movement Analysis.

3.4. Some Restrictions on Scrambling.

4. Null Anaphora.

4.1. Syntactic Representation of Null Anaphora.

4.2. Interpretation of Null Anaphora.

5. Reflexives.

5.1. Zibun.

5.2. Zibun-Zisin.

6.The Notion of Subject.

6.1. Reflexivization.

6.2. Subject Honorification.

7. Passives.

7.1. Direct Passives.

7.2. Indirect Passives (Adversative Passives).

7.3. Ni Yotte-Passives.

8. Causatives.

8.1. O-Causatives and Ni-Causatives.

8.2. The Double-O Constraint.

8.3. The Structure of Causatives.

8.4. Causative Passives.

8.5. Adversative Causatives.

8.6. Lexical Causatives.

9. Relative Clauses (Sentence Modifiers).

9.1. The Ga/No Conversion.

9.2. Relative Clauses without Gaps.

9.3. Internally Headed Relative Clauses.

10. Unaccusativity.

11. The Light Verb Construction.

12. Further Issues on Phrase Structure.

12.1. X′-Theory.

12.2. Application to Japanese.


Suggested Readings.


6. Semantics.

1. Word Meaning and Sentence Meaning.

1.1. Word/Phrase Meaning and Types of Relationships.

1.2. Sentence Meaning.

1.3. Metaphors and Idioms.

1.4. Deixis.

1.5. Mimetics.

2. Tense and Aspect.

2.1. Tense.

2.2. Aspect.

3. Verb Semantics.

3.1. Linking Regularity and Unaccusativity.

3.2. Semantic Classes of Verbs and their Syntactic Patterns.

3.3. Lexicalization.

4. Pragmatics.

4.1. Speaker’s Meaning.

4.2. The Nature of Information.

4.3. Relevance of Contextual Information.


Suggested Readings.


7. Language Variation.

1.Dialectal Variation.

2. Styles and Levels of Speech.

3. Gender Differences.


Suggested Readings.


8. Language Acquisition.

1. Regularity in Language Acquisition.

1.1. Phonological Unit – Mora.

1.2. Lexicalization Pattern and Mimetics.

1.3. Tense/Aspect Marking.

2. Generalizations in Children’s Errors.

2.1. Inflectional Morphology.

2.1. Case Particles.

2.3. Prenominal Modification.

3. Theoretical Approaches to Verb Acquisition.

4. Pragmatic Acquisition.

Suggested Readings.




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