A new trend in lexicography
Ishikawa received his MA from Kobe
University and PhD from Okayama
University. He has written monographs in the fields of linguistics
and literature, and co-edited several publications, including English Lexicography in Japan (2006).
His current research interests include corpus linguistics, lexicography, and
literary text analysis. Dr. Ishikawa is associate professor of English and
Applied Linguistics at Kobe
The publication of an anthology of theoretical and
practical English dictionary research in Japan has been anticipated for more than ten years, since the
founding of the Society of English Lexicography as a Special Interest Group
in JACET (Japan Association of College English Teachers, www.jacet.org).
When we learned that the world congress of applied
linguistics (AILA Congress 1999) would be held in Tokyo, we asked some JACET members who specialized in
lexicography and lexicology to form an interest group for the study of
dictionaries and vocabulary. We hoped to give one or two symposiums and
several paper presentations at the congress.
In September 1995, we discussed
the purpose and activities of the interest group, and invited about 30 JACET
members to form a lexicography society. Ten members attended the launching of
the JACET Society of English Lexicography, held in the JACET office on December 20, 1995, where we finalized the purpose of the group and
adopted official regulations.
At first we had rather small-scale meetings every other
month. In order to generate greater interest we decided to hold a symposium.
The first symposium was held the following December under the title ‘Some
Present Problems in English Lexicography’, and 66 people participated in the
discussion. This gave momentum to subsequent meetings, and since then 40 or
more people have attended all society meetings.
Since the AILA Congress ’99, where society members
sponsored one symposium, invited one lecturer, and gave more than ten presentations,
the JACET Society of English Lexicography has grown steadily. We organized
the international conference of the Asian Association for Lexicography
(ASIALEX) in Tokyo in 2003, which attracted 234 attendants from 16
countries. It featured six plenary lectures, six symposiums, 54 paper
presentations and 12 poster presentations. For the past ten years we have
invited numerous eminent lexicographers and scholars in the related fields to
Japan, including Dr. R.R.K. Hartmann, Dr. Tom McArthur, Mr.
Michael Rundell, Dr. Adam Kilgarriff, Dr. Henri Béjoint, Dr. Anne Pakir, and
Dr. Howard Jackson.
Additionally, the JACET Society of English Lexicography
has hosted workshops almost every year since 1997. These workshops have
provided opportunities for participants to give presentations and to acquire
feedback from peer scholars. The seventh workshop was held in March 2006 with
42 presentations and 139 attendants.
The great success of our symposiums and workshops led us
to the memorial project to publish a collection of papers on English
lexicography in Japan. The society called for papers in June 2005. Among a
large number of abstracts, 23 refereed and 2 invited papers were finally
included in the book, which we believe shows how broadly and earnestly lexicography
is studied in Japan.
Though they might not be a comprehensive representation
of today’s lexicography, the papers included in English Lexicography in
Japan clearly exemplify the standard of dictionary studies in Japan. The editors believe that this publication will stimulate
further discussion in the spreading branches of lexicography, and contribute
to its advances in general.
English lexicography in
Japan and KDN
The following articles concerning
apects of English lexicography in Japan
have appeared in Kernerman Dictionary News over the years:
included a reprint of ‘Monolingual or Bilingual, that is not the
Question: the ‘Bilingualised’ Dictionary’, by Kyohei Nakamoto, originally
published in Lexicon 24, 1994, and was accompanied by ‘Answers
to Open Questions’, by Joseph A. Reif.
included ‘English Lexicography in Japan:
its History, Innovations and Impact’, by Shigeru Yamada and Yuri Komuro,
reprinted later that year in Lexicography in Asia.
included ‘Dictionary Use for Production among Japanese College Students of
English’, by Yuri Komuro and Shigeru Yamada.
2002, included ‘English Japanese Lexicography and the Unabridged Genius’,
by Kosei Minamide.