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Can it cover an entire month? Two?

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3 Answers

up vote 14 down vote accepted

Completely context-dependent. Try googling "最近の年号" — in this phrase, 最近 goes back a century or more.

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People might complain that this answer is offensive, but I feel English-centrism or bias in this question. Have you ever thought of the following questions?: How long of a time period does recent cover? What is the threshold of length that divides things being referred to as this or as that?

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I don't think there's anything wrong with this answer. It's eye opening. –  Louis Sep 28 '11 at 13:40
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I don't see the English bias, is it because the question was asked in English? What if we were to ask the question in Japanese, like this guy: detail.chiebukuro.yahoo.co.jp/qa/question_detail/q1117338791 There are countless others to be found on Google too. –  phirru Sep 28 '11 at 14:03
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Thanks to Louis for understanding the nuance. Phirru, it is not because it is asked in English; it is because it is asking things about Japanese whose English counterpart the OP would prorably not have asked. –  sawa Sep 28 '11 at 15:01
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That's because the OP already knows how to use the English words. It's easy to imagine someone who's not a native speaker of English asking those questions. For any given word or phrase, "It means exactly the same thing as [some english word] and you can use it whenever you would have used that word in English" isn't necessarily true (speaking of english-centric ways of thinking), and it isn't a priori obvious even if it is true. Just because native speakers of a language don't think of some aspect of meaning in explicit terms doesn't mean it's not a legitimate thing to ask or describe. –  Random832 Sep 28 '11 at 15:07
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I'm guessing that it's because the word "bias" seems to contain a negative accusatory connotation when directed towards a person. But if we all read it as a statistical deviation then there's nothing inherently offensive in using the word "bias" to describe such a situation. As in "I'm less likely to ask this question with regard to the English language than compared to a foreign language." Which is in summary a "bias". But not used in an offensive sense. "Bias" here is not a common term to all parties. Some understand it with a negative connotation, and some see nothing inherently wrong. –  Flaw Sep 28 '11 at 15:33
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Yes it can cover an entire month. And yes, it can even cover two.

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