This paper investigates the similarities and differences between three sub-registers of Japanese recipe texts: cookbook recipes, online commercial recipes written/edited by professionals, and online usergenerated recipes. Past studies on Japanese recipes do not distinguish different sub-registers, and they tend to focus on a single feature. The present study of the sub-registers examines a group of frequently appearing linguistic features and uncovers functional links between observed features and situational characteristics. The comparative perspective contributes to a more comprehensive understanding of the Japanese recipe language as well as universal and language-specific aspects of register variation. Shared traits among the three sub-registers are tied to the common topic of cooking and the central purpose of providing easy-to-follow food preparation instructions. Varied linguistic and textual features are motivated by different production circumstances, mediums, and relations among the participants. Professionally edited cookbook and online commercial recipes show a much higher uniformity in their grammatical features than unedited/self-edited user-generated recipes. Online sub-registers share a role of serving as a repository and reference center for numerous recipes and related information. Relationships among writers, readers, and other participants such as publishers and site organizers differ among all three sub-registers, resulting in some unique linguistic patterns.
Original Publication Citation
Kaneyasu, M., & Kuhara, M. (2020). Regularity and variation in Japanese recipes: A comparative analysis of cookbook, online and user-generated sub-registers. Register Studies, 2(1), 37-71. https://doi.org/https://doi.org/10.1075/rs.18014.kan
Kaneyasu, Michiko and Kuhara, Minako, "Regularity and Variation in Japanese Recipes: A Comparative Analysis of Cookbook, Online, and User-generated Sub-registers" (2020). World Languages and Cultures Faculty Publications. 31.