Thursday, June 12, 2014

"Proper" names and the Tea Party

Sometimes it's difficult to tell which English words and terms get properly "Japanized" with kanji and everything, and which ones merely receive a cursory katakanization. This is in large part because, especially with more recently-coined words, they can sometimes be treated both ways.

The reason I bring this up is simply because in my daily work meetings, we discuss the news (mostly pertaining to telecom). On occasion, the material we read does range beyond that purview, hence why I've heard the term 「ティーパーティー」 (Tea Party) before. I had just assumed it was a standard katakana-grade word. But I just read a blurb that referred to the group as the 「茶会党」 - that is literally the "tea party party."

Interesting to note. I hadn't realized that 「茶会」 was a word, but there you go. It's also used to refer to the Boston Tea Party. ボストン茶会事件.

Look at that - I inserted politics again!


  1. So the word meaning social festivity (party) is the same in Japanese as the word meaning the organized political group (party)? Are Japanese political parties also referred to by that word or just American?

  2. Well, 会 can mean a "party" like a meeting of people. 党 means "party" as in a political group (in any country). Since it's 茶 (tea) 会 (party) 党 (party), it's literally "Tea Party Party." Just that we use the same word for two different meanings in English, so it would sound redundant for us to say "party" twice in a row.