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Role Language in Japanese Movies -Focusing on the movie Simotsuma Monogatari (Kamikaze Girls)-

  • 日本硏究
  • 2024, (60), pp.33-54
  • DOI : 10.20404/jscau.2024.02.60.33
  • Publisher : The Center for Japanese Studies
  • Research Area : Humanities > Japanese Language and Literature
  • Received : January 4, 2024
  • Accepted : January 24, 2024
  • Published : February 20, 2024

baek yiyun 1

1고려대학교

Accredited

ABSTRACT

This study examined main characters’ role language in the Japanese film Shimotsuma Monogatari and analyzed how it relates to their personalities and the film’s narrative. Role language refers to a set of linguistic features (vocabulary, tone, intonation) that suggest a certain persona (age, gender, profession, class, etc.) in subcultures or media (Kinsui, 2003). The study’s results are as follows. First, we identified each character’s archetypal role language. To clearly convey their persona, the Yankee uses the first person atai and the diminutive zo or ze; the Kansai dialect speaker uses akan, haru, ee, and ya; and the Onekyara uses nano. Second, in addition to the typical role language, we identified some utterances that fit each character. Yankee characters do not use proper honorifics or idioms, indicating their low education level, and Onekyara’s sarcasm reinforces his character. These utterances give the film comic energy and are important to the narrative. Third, the role language also reveals the characteristics of the space in which the characters speak. The use of the Kansai dialect in this film emphasizes a past that is distant from the present, a fictional space that differs from reality, and a space where exaggerated comic events occur. Fourth, Momoko’s standard Japanese reveals her noble, aristocratic character and highlights other characters’ backgrounds through contrast, rendering it significant that Momoko’s style shifts from standard Japanese to Yankee speech during the film’s climax.

Citation status

* References for papers published after 2022 are currently being built.

This paper was written with support from the National Research Foundation of Korea.