The Linguistics Department has long had interests in Japanese linguistics, as well as Japanese psycholinguistics and sociolinguistics. The first two of these research areas have been the subject of numerous research thrusts by the collaboration of Joseph F. Kess and Tadao Miyamoto over the past decade and more. Articles, book chapters, proceedings contributions, and conference presentations have explored various aspects of Japanese linguistics and psycholinguistics, and two books have summarized their findings on Japanese psycholinguistics and the Japanese mental lexicon. Dr. Kess is currently involved in a research project to do with Japanese language protocols on the internet with colleagues at the government-sponsored National Institute for the Japanese Language and the publishing house Kinokuniya, both in Tokyo.
The area of Japanese sociolinguistics has been the focus of efforts by our colleague Dr. Hiroko Noro, of the Department of Pacific and Asian Studies, who also teaches the cross-listed course (LING 396) in Japanese sociolinguistics. Sociolinguistic dimensions of Japanese as a heritage language in Canada has more recently been the object of a collaborative effort by Joseph F. Kess and Hiroko Noro, as has the impact of changing policies on the perceptions of Japanese identity inside and outside of Japan.