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ERIC Number: EJ884580
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2007
Pages: 16
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 21
ISSN: ISSN-0143-4632
"So What Is the Appeal?" The Phenomenon of Japanese as a Foreign Language in Hong Kong
Humphreys, Gillian; Miyazoe-Wong, Yuko
Journal of Multilingual and Multicultural Development, v28 n6 p468-483 2007
In spite of long-standing political tensions between Japan and the People's Republic of China, Japanese remains a highly popular language to learn in Hong Kong. This is evidenced by the growth in number of Japanese-related courses and programmes offered at schools and universities in the Special Administrative Region. Although Japan is a dominant economic force in the region, the trend is not entirely explained by demand for Japanese in the workplace. A questionnaire survey of samples of students at three Hong Kong tertiary institutions explored respondents' motivation to learn both compulsory languages (English and Putonghua) and elective ones (Japanese, French and German). Results confirmed the popularity of Japanese as a language of choice, and found the motivation to learn it both affective and pragmatic, but more affective. Follow-up interviews identified three major issues involved in students' choice of Japanese: the appeal of Japanese popular culture; the perceived usefulness (or otherwise) of the language; and geographical proximity. A sense of shared traditions and high culture between China and Japan did not appear to be an issue for these respondents. Current political issues between China and Japan also seemed to be irrelevant. (Contains 2 tables.)
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Higher Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: China; Hong Kong; Japan