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Abstract

Analysis of 105 Japanese taste descriptions gathered from observation of conversations at a potluck party and responses on written surveys at the party and in a workplace shows that speakers go beyond the common oisii ‘(it)’s tasty’ in their socialization through food sharing. The descriptions included specific descriptions of flavor, texture, and references to personal experiences related to food. The use of the word hutuu ‘ordinary’ had a more positive connotation than has been traditionally associated with this word. Results validated Ohashi’s (2010) market research finding that onomatopoeic expressions have been replacing more traditional clausal descriptions of food texture. This research suggests the pedagogical usefulness of the strategy of relating food being shared to personal experiences and concrete sensory expressions.

References

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