Research Centre for Japanese Language and Linguistics 日本語研究センター

The Research Centre for Japanese Language and Linguistics was created in March 2009 within the Faculty of Oriental Studies to function as an umbrella for research activities related to Japanese language and linguistics through the University.

The Centre also serves as a forum for publicizing teaching, seminars, lectures, and other activities of interest to Japanese linguistics, and as a point of access to information for prospective graduate students interested in Japanese language and linguistics. The Centre welcomes academic visitors to the University who work within Japanese linguistics.

In addition to the Centre's membership of staff and graduate students from the Faculty of Oriental Studies and the new Faculty of Linguistics and our visiting scholars, the Centre also has a membership of external affiliates who have a connection with the Centre and its members, for example through joint research projects.

A major research project hosted within the Centre is the four-and-a-half year project, 'Verb semantics and argument realization in pre-modern Japanese', which is a collaborative effort involving researchers working in England, Japan, and the US. However, the research of the members of the Centre is wide-ranging, from acquisition of Japanese as a foreign language to reconstruction of proto-Japanese morphology.






Bjarke Frellesvig hanging out in Hertford chapel




John Whitman asks Masayoshi (Matt) Shibatani a question at  the valency conference at NINJAL




Masayoshi (Matt) Shibatani and Peter Sells




John Whitman and Taro Kageyama at a workshop on Japanese linguistics




Students at the RCJLL


Recent Talks

10 March 2015
Hiroshi Yoshiba (Aoyama Gakuin University) presented "A Japanese vowel hierarchy and the notion of syllable" (more)

3 March 2015
Barbara Pizziconi (SOAS) presented "An indexical approach to the study of Japanese honorifics" (more)

24 February 2015
Thomas Jo Johansen (Oxford) presented "The Esopo no fabulas corpus" (more)


New Publications

Frellesvig, Bjarke, Stephen W. Horn, Kerri L. Russell, and Peter Sells. 2013. "Provisional and Conditional Clauses in Old Japanese." In Ozge, Umut, ed. Proceedings of the 8th Workshop on Altaic Formal Linguistics. MIT Working Papers in Linguistics, 67, 65-78.

Kerri L Russell and Stephen Wright Horn. 2012. "Verb Semantics and Argument Realization in Pre-modern Japanese: A Corpus Based Study." Chung-Hwa Buddhist Journal, 25, 129-148.


The Oxford Corpus of Old Japanese is now available online. This full poetic corpus of Old Japanese presents the original script and a phonemic transcription of all Old Japanese poetic texts.


New Book

Japanese Korean Linguistics 20 book cover.


Studies in Japanese and Korean Linguistics book cover.


Now in paperback:
Proto-Japanese Issues and Prospects paperback book cover.


A History of the Japanese Language book cover.


Regular events

Join us for our weekly coffee and Japanese linguistics on Fridays at 11 during full term.

The East Asian Linguistics Seminar takes place in the Oriental Institute on Tuesdays from 5-6 during Hilary Term. (schedule)

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