As anti-Japanese protests and riots swirl across China (over some tiny, rocky, contested islands in the middle of the sea between Taiwan and Okinawa), Xu Wenguang, program director of CCTV 1, made this remarkable statement:
To all those people calling for the boycott of Japanese products and those using this opportunity to attack the property of your own countrymen. You need to know that the biggest Japanese export to China isn't cars, or television sets or manga. It's language. About 70% of social science terms used in Chinese today came from Japanese — 'society', 'economics', 'philosophy', 'environment', 'arts', 'medicine', 'law', 'rights', and yes, even 'protest'. If you love this country, then strive to help this country gain respect from others instead of using cheap means of displaying your intolerance.
`Hūyù dǐzhì Rì huò, shènzhì jiè jī dǎzá tóngbāo cáiwù de rén, xū zhīdào, Rìběn chūkǒu dào Zhōngguó zuìduō de bùshì qìchē, diànshì, hé dòngmàn, ér shì cíhuì. Xiàndài Hànyǔ 70%de shèkē cíhuì láizì Rìyǔ, pìrú: shèhuì , jīngjì, zhéxué, huánjìng, yìshù, yīxué, fǎlǜ, rénquán…bāokuò “kàngyì”. Ài zìjǐ de guójiā, jiù nǔlì ràng zhège guójiā yíngdé biérén de zūnzhòng yǔ jìngwèi, ér bùshì yòng liánjià de fènnù zhèngmíng zìjǐ de piānxiá.'
In my Language Log posts and elsewhere, I've often pointed out the Japanese origins of many key words in modern Chinese intellectual, cultural, and scientific discourse. See, for example, "Two Papers on Sinolinguistics: 1. A Hypothesis Concerning the Origin of the Term fanqie ('Countertomy'); 2. East Asian Round-Trip Words," Sino-Platonic Papers, 34 (October, 1992).