Heritage Languages in Japan and Korea

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter


This chapter examines heritage languages in Japan and Korea, the two East Asian countries historically considered linguistically and culturally homogeneous. In consideration of the variation in conceptualizations of and approaches to heritage language, the current chapter adopts an inclusive understanding of the term “heritage language” and categorizes heritage language speakers as individuals with heritage connections and motivations, rather than limiting the designation to individuals who have a good command of the heritage language and are in regular contact with its speakers in familial and community contexts. The chapter then lays out the linguistic diversity and the patterns of language maintenance, shift, and revitalization in Japan and Korea. The chapter discusses ethnic Chinese immigrants and their settlement patterns in relation to language shift, and recent waves of immigrants and their languages in light of societal accommodations in Korea as an immigrant-receiving country. Implications of the findings and directions for future research and practice are suggested.
Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationThe Cambridge Handbook of Heritage Languages and Linguistics
EditorsSilvina Montrul, Maria Polinsky
PublisherCambridge University Press
Number of pages18
ISBN (Electronic)9781108766340
ISBN (Print)9781108487269
StatePublished - 2021

Publication series

NameCambridge Handbooks in Language and Linguistics


  • Heritage language
  • linguistic diversity
  • immigrant language
  • indigenous language
  • Korea
  • Japan


Dive into the research topics of 'Heritage Languages in Japan and Korea'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this