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Lexical Leavings

by Tom Gally



An article in today's Nikkei reports that, despite an overall drop in the sales of books and magazines, dictionary sales in Japan have been increasing. The possible explanations cited include the supposed 日本語ブーム, faster revision cycles, the publication of dictionaries that better meet readers' needs, and an increase in the number of foreigners studying Japanese. Which factor might have had the greatest effect is unclear, as the article provides no statistics about which types of dictionaries are selling best. Although it got the biggest headline, increased demand from foreign learners seems likely to be the least important factor.
(March 2, 2003)

Nikkei Article
(日本経済新聞, 2003.03.02)
Sales Chart
(日本経済新聞, 2003.03.02)