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Kunrei-shiki rōmaji (訓令式ローマ字"?) is a "Cabinet-ordered, Japanese "romanization system, i.e. a system for transcribing the "Japanese language into the "Latin alphabet. It is abbreviated as Kunrei-shiki. Its name is rendered Kunreisiki using Kunrei-shiki itself. Kunrei-shiki is sometimes known as the "Monbushō system in English, because it is taught in the Monbushō-approved elementary school curriculum. The "ISO has standardized Kunrei-shiki under ISO 3602.
Kunrei-shiki is based on the older "Nihon-shiki (Nipponsiki) system, modified for modern standard Japanese. For example, the word かなづかい, romanized kanadukai in Nihon-shiki, is pronounced kanazukai in common modern Japanese, and Kunrei-shiki uses the latter spelling. Kunrei-shiki competes with the older "Hepburn romanization system, which was promoted by the authorities during the "occupation of Japan.
In the period before "World War II there was a political conflict between supporters of "Hepburn romanization and supporters of "Nihon-shiki romanization. In 1930 a board of inquiry under the aegis of the "Minister of Education was established to determine the proper romanization system. The Japanese government, by cabinet order (訓令 kunrei), announced on September 21, 1937 that a modified form of Nihon-shiki would be officially adopted as Kunrei-shiki. The form at the time differs slightly from the modern day form. Originally the system was called the Kokutei (国定, government-authorized) system.
The Japanese government gradually introduced Kunrei-shiki. It appeared in secondary education, on railway station signboards, on nautical charts, and on the 1:1,000,000 scale "International Map of the World. In the period when the central government had strong control, from 1937 to 1945, the Japanese government used Kunrei-shiki in its tourist brochures. In Japan, some use of Nihon-shiki and Modified Hepburn remained because some individuals supported the use of those systems.
J. Marshall Unger, author of Literacy and Script Reform in Occupation Japan : Reading between the Lines, said that the Hepburn supporters "understandably" believed that the Kunrei-shiki "compromise" was not fair, because of the presence of the "un-English-looking spellings" that the Modified Hepburn supporters had opposed. Andrew Horvat, author of Japanese Beyond Words: How to Walk and Talk Like a Native Speaker, argued that "by forcing non-native speakers of Japanese with no intentions of learning the language to abide by a system intended for those who have some command of Japanese, the government gave the impression of intolerant language management that would have dire consequences later on."
After the Japanese government was defeated in 1945, General "Douglas MacArthur, the "Supreme Commander for the Allied Powers issued a directive, dated September 3, 1945, that stated that "Modified Hepburn was the method for transcribing Japanese names. Some editorials printed in Japanese newspapers advocated for only using Hepburn. Supporters of Hepburn denounced pro-Kunrei-shiki and pro-Nihon-shiki advocates to the SCAP offices, accusing them of being inactive militarists, and of collaborating with militarists. Unger said that the nature of Kunrei-shiki led to "pent-up anger" among the Hepburn supporters. During the post-war period, several educators and scholars tried to introduce romanized letters as a teaching device and as a possibility of being a substitution for "kanji. However Kunrei-shiki had associations with Japanese militarism and the U.S. occupying government was reluctant to promote it. On December 9, 1954, the Japanese government re-confirmed Kunrei-shiki as its official system; this time the Kunrei-shiki system had slight modifications done to it. "Eleanor Jorden, an American linguist, made textbooks that used a modified version of Kunrei-shiki. They were used in the 1960s in courses given to U.S. diplomats. The use of her books did not change the U.S. government's hesitation to use Kunrei-shiki.
As of 1974, according to the "Geographical Survey Institute, Kunrei-shiki was used for topographical maps while Modified Hepburn was used for geological maps and aeronautical charts.
As of 1978, the "National Diet Library used Kunrei-shiki. The "Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the "Ministry of International Trade and Industry, and many other official organizations instead used Hepburn. In addition "The Japan Times, the "Japan Travel Bureau, and many other private organizations used Hepburn instead of Kunrei-shiki.
The system was originally promulgated as Japanese Cabinet Order No. 3 as of September 21, 1937. But since this had been overturned by the "SCAP during the "Occupation of Japan, the Japanese government repealed it and decreed again as Japanese Cabinet Order No.1 as of December 29, 1954. The order mandated the use of Kunrei-shiki in "the written expression of Japanese generally", with a provision that specific alternative spellings could be used in international relations, and where necessary to follow established precedent. See Permitted Exceptions for details. (Japanese text)
Kunrei-shiki has been recognized, along with Nihon-shiki, in ISO 3602:1989. Documentation—Romanization of Japanese (kana script) by the "ISO. It was also recommended by the "American National Standards Institute (ANSI) after they withdrew their own standard, ANSI Z39.11-1972 American National Standard System for the Romanization of Japanese (Modified "Hepburn), in 1994.
Despite its official recognition, Japanese commonly choose between Nihon-shiki/Kunrei-shiki and "Hepburn for any given situation. However, the Japanese government generally uses Hepburn, especially for the romanization of Japanese names on passports, road signage, and train signage.
Otherwise, the majority of Western publications and all English-language newspapers use some form of Hepburn.
Because Kunrei-shiki is based on "Japanese phonology, it can cause non-native speakers to pronounce words incorrectly. John Hinds, author of Japanese: Descriptive Grammar, describes this problem as "a major disadvantage."["page needed]
Additional complications appear with newer kana combinations such as ティーム("チーム) team. In Hepburn, these would be distinguished as different sounds and represented tīmu and chīmu respectively, giving better indications of the English pronunciations. For some Japanese speakers, however, the sounds ティ "ti" and チ "chi" are the same phoneme; they are both represented in Kunrei-shiki as tîmu. Such complications may be confusing to those who do not know Japanese phonology well.
Today, the main users of Kunrei-shiki are native speakers of Japanese (especially within Japan) and "linguists studying Japanese. The main advantage of Kunrei-shiki is that it is better able to illustrate "Japanese grammar, as Hepburn preserves the irregularity of certain conjugations (see table, right).["page needed] The most serious problem of Hepburn in this context is that it may change the "stem of a "verb, which is not reflected in the underlying "morphology of the language. One notable introductory textbook for English speakers, "Eleanor Jorden's "Japanese: The Spoken Language, uses her "JSL romanization, a system strongly influenced by Kunrei-shiki in its adherence to Japanese phonology, but adapted to teaching proper pronunciation of Japanese phonemes.
|あ ア a||い イ i||う ウ u||え エ e||お オ o||(ya)||(yu)||(yo)|
|か カ ka||き キ ki||く ク ku||け ケ ke||こ コ ko||きゃ キャ kya||きゅ キュ kyu||きょ キョ kyo|
|さ サ sa||し シ si||す ス su||せ セ se||そ ソ so||しゃ シャ sya||しゅ シュ syu||しょ ショ syo|
|た タ ta||ち チ ti||つ ツ tu||て テ te||と ト to||ちゃ チャ tya||ちゅ チュ tyu||ちょ チョ tyo|
|な ナ na||に ニ ni||ぬ ヌ nu||ね ネ ne||の ノ no||にゃ ニャ nya||にゅ ニュ nyu||にょ ニョ nyo|
|は ハ ha||ひ ヒ hi||ふ フ hu||へ ヘ he||ほ ホ ho||ひゃ ヒャ hya||ひゅ ヒュ hyu||ひょ ヒョ hyo|
|ま マ ma||み ミ mi||む ム mu||め メ me||も モ mo||みゃ ミャ mya||みゅ ミュ myu||みょ ミョ myo|
|や ヤ ya||(i)||ゆ ユ yu||(e)||よ ヨ yo|
|ら ラ ra||り リ ri||る ル ru||れ レ re||ろ ロ ro||りゃ リャ rya||りゅ リュ ryu||りょ リョ ryo|
|わ ワ wa||ゐ ヰ i||(u)||ゑ ヱ e||を ヲ o|
|ん ン n|
|voiced sounds ("dakuten)|
|が ガ ga||ぎ ギ gi||ぐ グ gu||げ ゲ ge||ご ゴ go||ぎゃ ギャ gya||ぎゅ ギュ gyu||ぎょ ギョ gyo|
|ざ ザ za||じ ジ zi||ず ズ zu||ぜ ゼ ze||ぞ ゾ zo||じゃ ジャ zya||じゅ ジュ zyu||じょ ジョ zyo|
|だ ダ da||ぢ ヂ zi||づ ヅ zu||で デ de||ど ド do||ぢゃ ヂャ zya||ぢゅ ヂュ zyu||ぢょ ヂョ zyo|
|ば バ ba||び ビ bi||ぶ ブ bu||べ ベ be||ぼ ボ bo||びゃ ビャ bya||びゅ ビュ byu||びょ ビョ byo|
|ぱ パ pa||ぴ ピ pi||ぷ プ pu||ぺ ペ pe||ぽ ポ po||ぴゃ ピャ pya||ぴゅ ピュ pyu||ぴょ ピョ pyo|
The Cabinet Order makes an exception to the above chart:
|しゃ sha||し shi||しゅ shu||しょ sho|
|ちゃ cha||ち chi||ちゅ chu||ちょ cho|
|じゃ ja||じ ji||じゅ ju||じょ jo|
|ぢ di||づ du|
|ぢゃ dya||ぢゅ dyu||ぢょ dyo|
This exceptional clause is not to be confused with other systems of romanization (such as "Hepburn) and does not specifically relax other requirements such as marking long vowels.
The major disadvantage of this system (Kunrei-shiki) is that there is a tendency for nonnative speakers of Japanese to pronounce certain forms incorrectly.
The major advantage of kunrei-shiki is that inflectional endings are seen to be more regular.