Borrowed Expressions

The English language owes much of its richness to the countless expressions borrowed from other tongues, and Japan has made some notable contributions to the lexicon. Very few native speakers of English are aware, however, of the etymology of some of the Japanese words they use. How many people would have realised, for example, that “karaoke” is partly a corruption of English?

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About John Middleton

Professor John Middleton was born in Melbourne, Australia in 1964 and first became acquainted with Tokyo in 1979.

After graduating from Monash University with a Bachelor of Arts degree with First Class Honours, majoring in Japanese language and Japanese studies, and a Bachelor of Laws degree, John was awarded a Japanese Government (Monbusho) Research Scholarship in 1990 to further his studies of Japanese language and law at Osaka University of Foreign Studies (now part of Osaka University) and Hitotsubashi University respectively. He now holds Master and Doctor of Laws degrees from Hitotsubashi University, has been admitted to practise as a Barrister and Solicitor of the Supreme Court of Victoria in Australia and an Attorney and Counselor-at-Law in the State of New York, and has spent two years as an Academic Visitor at the Faculty of Laws, University College London.

John currently serves as Professor of Anglo-American Law, specialising in comparative media law, at the Hitotsubashi University School of Law, which consistently ranks highest among all law schools in the country in terms of the performance of its graduates in the national bar examination. He is believed to be the first non-Japanese in history to be promoted from Assistant to Lecturer, Associate Professor, and Professor at the law faculty of a national university in Japan and the first Western legal scholar to write and publish a substantial body of work in Japanese. He also contributes to society as a Director of the Content Evaluation and Monitoring Association (EMA).

The "Tokyo, From One to Infinity" series is his first major non-academic work in his native tongue and a step towards realising his childhood dream of becoming an author. He sincerely hopes you will enjoy reading each instalment as much as he is enjoying creating them.

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