Japanese vogue words of 2013.
Happy New Year 2014.
In Japan, there are many unique traditions practiced during the end of year and new year time such as “Hatumode(first shrine visiting)”, “Osechi (traditional dishes for the new year)”, and so on. One of the interesting end of year events is an award of new words and vogue words of the year by U-CAN(a Japanese education support company). Every year, there are buzzing words that everyone is using them in common during the year especially often used among comedians on TV shows. These words are the highlight of the year in Japan. It is not always positive words and selected from not only the entertainment field, but also economics, politics, and so on; however, these words are usually not stable for very long time. Many nominations tend to be from entertainments such as TV drama and shows.
The award started in 1984 selecting Top 10 words and grand prizes. The last year 2013, there were 4 grand prizes which was unusual comparing to previous years.
今でしょ imadesho (It’s now, Now rignt?)
A private prep school teacher Osamu Hayashi spread this word on TV commercial of his school. The catch phrase is “When you do? Now right”.
Christel Takigawa, a Japanese news announcer, used this word “Omotenashi” during her presentation in the IOC(International Olympic Committee) for Olympics 2020 in Tokyo at Buenos Aires. Fortunately, Tokyo won the competition for the Olympics 2020 against Istanbul, Turkey and Madrid, Spain. She described “Japanese hospitality to welcome poeple” using this word. Personality this word represents Japanese personality well. If you have been to Japan, you find this “Omotenashi” right after you stepped out the airplane.
“Jejeje ” is used in a very popular TV drama “Amachan” as a dialect of “Sanriku(northern part of Honshu) region” equivalent to “eeee” (surprising expression). In English, this word or sound is likely to be translated as “Whaaaaat”, “Really?”, and “Are you serious”. Japanese has an interesting expression of surprising. It is not exactly a word, but just a sound; ‘eeeeeee’. I believe the TV drama was the most popular in 2013.
This word is also from a popular TV drama called “半沢直樹” Naoki Hanzawa. It is about a man who works at traditional Japanese bank.
- アベノミクス abenomic
- ご当地キャラ gotouchi-kyara
- 特定機密保護法 tokuteikimitsu-hogo-ho
- ブラック企業 black-kigyo
- ヘイトスピーチ hate-speech