17

Why is the Japanese government considering adding kanji such as “cancer” to the jinmeiyō kanji? I do not think that the government is trying to add these kanji to the set of jinmeiyō kanji. I think that some people are confused by the unclear description in Wikipedia. At least I was confused at first. So probably it is useful to clarify it. Article 50 ...


12

A コラ (or コラ画像) can roughly be devided into two categories: A コラ that looks as if it were genuine. For example, an image of an anime character, porn actress, etc., whose head is skillfully replaced with the head of someone else. Making a good コラ in this sense requires a great amount of time and skill. A コラ that is meant to be served as a pure joke, as in #...


10

You've stepped on a potential land mine of debate there. Whether or not 外人{がいじん} is offensive, politically incorrect, or means something other than just "foreigner" is the topic of a lot of heated debate. Take a look here for the "gaijin is offensive side". Take a look at the Wikipidia entry for links to the "gaijin is just a word" side. Which means that ...


10

Only some words derived from 田舎, such as 「田舎っぺ」「田舎者【いなかもの】」「田舎臭【いなかくさ】い」, are derogatory. I think 田舎 itself is not derogatory. Although this word typically has the negative sense by its nature, saying 「私は田舎が好きだ」 or 「私は田舎で暮らしたい」 is perfectly correct. One euphemistic expression that means 田舎 is 地方【ちほう】. 「地方に住んでいる人」 usually means a person who lives outside ...


10

It's not prohibited to use in public, though it's not necessarily an objective expression and has negative nuance because it means people who gather at incidents with casual curiosity. In that point, 人だかり etc. will be safer. If you address a certain person as 野次馬, it'd sound offensive to him/her, but on the other hand, it's not particularly a problem to use ...


9

It's not uncommon to see people use apparently derogatory words among themselves to increase the togetherness of community, and so does Japanese internet society, as a long tradition. You can find a number of such Japanese memes like これはひどい "that's terrible", マジキチ "absolutely crazy", 作者は病気 "the author's sick" etc. which actually praising their eccentricity ...


8

I do not claim to know the origin of this particular term [小便芸者]{しょんべんげいしゃ} but I have reasons to doubt the male anatomy hypothesis. In the most vulgar kind of Japanese, [小便]{しょんべん} is sometimes added to a noun like a prefix to express the speaker's hatred or strong disrespect of the object. The nuance it carries is much worse than "good for nothing". ...


8

I believe most Japanese think of Christmas as a secular, commercial holiday (gift giving, christmas decorations, etc) rather than a religious celebration of the birth of Christ, so I would think that most would not even think to be offended. It might be out of place to say at a religious (Shinto or Buddhist) shrine or celebration, but I would think this ...


7

Regarding 家柄, 血筋 and 身分: the page itself indicates that the words aren't so much banned as "requiring extra care" or "better to avoid if possible"... Considering their group (discriminatory words) and their neighbours (部落民), I think it's quite easy to understand why they might be considered potentially "offensive" words. By their history, they were most ...


7

I haven't talked to my lesbian friend in a long time, but I'll offer some words from my memory and from "Japanese Street Slang," by Peter Constantine. レズ - This corresponds to the English dyke, or lesbian. I think it has more of a "dyke" butch feel to it than just plain old lesbian. おたち - "The Japanese equivalent of 'bull dyke', used in lesbian circles, ...


7

タコ is sometimes used as an offensive word like バカ、アホ, マヌケ. This タコ would be an offensive word like that. Person's names including of タコ aren't many.


6

Apparently Dr. John Langdon Down discovered around 1860 what's now called Down's syndrome. Just like anyone, Dr. Down didn't name the syndrome after himself, but named it "mongolism" (also "mongoloid"), which was used widely until the 1960s. (More info here, at Down's Syndrome Scotland.) I'm guessing that 蒙古症 is a literal translation from English and was ...


5

I think it's not 小せェサル but [小]{ちい}せェ(サルの)島国. ちいせぇ is a rough, slangy pronunciation of ちいさい. (See: What does こまけー mean? / What is じゃねぇか? What is its original form?) この + 小さい + サルの島国 this little island of monkeys 小さい describes (サルの)島国. It's probably referring to Japan. I think サル here is used as an offensive/derogatory word for Japanese people.


5

I don't think 土着人 is a word. (On the other hand, you may be able to say 土着の人, but it has little to do with ethnicity of minority. It rather stands for local feature against global power these days.) Indigineous people in japanese are 先住民, 原住民 or 土人. Among them, the safest one is 先住民. 原住民 is less safe. Some people may not like it. 土人 is a derogatory word ...


5

I don't know why people are afraid to put forward negative answers... so I'll just do it myself. The phrase seems to almost certainly be just some kind of mistake on the part of the translator and has nothing to do with slang for lesbianism. Also, it is not a common phrase used in any particular way when a woman turns down a man. It's just a really, ...


5

The Japanese Wikipedia article has an entry on 放送問題用語 which includes some discussion of the different types of words that are considered problematic. It appears there is not a single list that applies to all broadcasters: (from the entry on 放送禁止用語) 今日の日本には放送禁止用語は正しくは存在せず自主規制のみである (Currently in Japan no "banned words" list exists and there are only ...


5

I think the difference between the words [家柄, 血筋 and 身分] vs. [上流, 階級, 地位] is what kind of status the words imply. The first group of words refer specifically to what social caste you or your ancestors were born into. This touches upon the 部落民 discrimination and all that unpleasantness. The second group of words though, refer to a more general type of ...


4

According to 大辞泉{だいじせん} the term came from 丁稚{でっち}, a term used particularly in the area around Kyōto for "shop boy"/apprentice (and also apparently sometimes used as a derogatory term itself). 小僧{こぞう} was the Edo equivalent of 丁稚. The suggested development is this: 丁稚 sounds like 重一, a term from sugoroku where both dice come up as ones. The opposite side ...


4

I think 田舎 itself is not derogatory. And if you talk about 田舎 in general, it's definitely not a derogatory word. But if you related 田舎 to some people, it can sound like derogatory. For example あの人は田舎から来た. (But this may be the same in any language...) And the word 田舎 also can be used like an adjective meaning less developed (city or town). For example, ...


3

Japanese doesn't really have 'profanity' in the European sense. There aren't words that are vulgar or censorable by virtue of being that word. There are words that are vulgar or censorable because of the meaning they have (eg words relating to sexual anatomy and so on), but there's nothing equivalent to English 'shit' that's considered censorable largely by ...


3

横分け is a word that refers to "side-parted hair style", not the type of the glasses he wears. 横分け of men's hair is better known as 七三分け【しちさんわけ】 (literally "7:3 parted"). The combination of 横分け and 眼鏡 is a stereotype of typical middle-aged Japanese businessmen like this: 横分け is usually not used as a derogatory term, but some Japanese people find 横分け as being ...


3

タコ is the most common form of writing octopus. Octopuses/Octopi are often associated with grabbing things; calling someone a タコ could allude to this in the same way you might call someone a 豚, 狐, or 犬. It could also be used like バカ or アホ but is not quite as common as them. In any case, people will be angry if you call them a タコ. It is not a common name. ...


3

I think it depends on the context. But maybe... In キン肉マン(kin-niku-man), an old famous manga, many heroes have a kanji on their forehead. Be affected by this manga, writing a kanji on the sleeper's forehead became a common prank in Japan. Typically, the kanji is [肉]{にく}(meats), because this kanji is on the main hero's forehead. Next, there is a proverb 「[食]{...


3

The terms we use most often would be 「ダウン[症候群]{しょうこうぐん}」 or 「ダウン[症]{しょう}」. I feel like I heard the term 「[蒙古症]{もうこしょう}」 when I was little, but I sure do not hear/see it anymore. 「蒙古症」 would be a direct translation of the desease name from its counterpart in a European language (not sure which one). As we all know now, however, the desease has nothing to ...


3

What did these words mean? 才六, 贅六, 賽六 and 采六 are all the same word written in various kanji. There are several pronunciations: sairoku: most basic and original. zeiroku: Derives from above sairoku. This is how an easterner would pronounce the word. ai > eː is a common phonological change in eastern Japanese. Likely pronounced as zeːroku (zeeroku) rather ...


3

小便芸者 means a poor geisha. Because such geisha often excuses herself from playing shamisen(三味線) or performing Mai(舞) to fudge on.


2

Oddly enough I was referred to as くろじゃ by elementary school students and one old man when I went to Japan for a ten day exchange. I figured out こくじん was the correct term before those incidents, and I became confused after hearing natives say another way.


2

I can only offer this: レズビアンの男役 literally meaning "male role" in a lesbian pair I suppose we could synthesise レズビアンの女役 for the "female role" but I'm not sure if 女役 is a recognized compound. Either that or レズビアン is by default referring to the female role, and the male role has to be specified. (I am entirely unsure on this so it'll be good if someone could ...


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