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harmful influence; worn out; humble prefix
Kanji 1779

Thank you for visiting this Character Home Page. Below you'll find a synopsis of the essay. If you wish to read the full text, the PDF of the essay is available for purchase to the right.

Synopsis

Japan may pride itself on its long traditions and conservative ways. But armed with 弊, people criticize antiquated thinking and talk about abandoning customs. The same kanji enables the Japanese to discuss exhaustion and worn-out objects. Despite all this negativity, people commonly use 弊 for upbeat statements such as “Thank you for your interest in our company.” 

Revision history:

Dec. 13, 2019:

  • p. 2: Etymology Box: Replaced the old Henshall etymology with the new one. 
  • p. 4: Changed the translation of 社会の悪弊を糾すべきだ to "We must investigate and expose societal abuses." Also changed the definition of 糾す to "to investigate and bring to light."
  • p. 14: Added a link to the Kanshudo games.

Sept. 8, 2017: Originally published.

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Kanji PDF
Cover of essay 1779 on 弊, titled "Harm and Humility"
Mini Profile
JOYO ON-YOMI
ヘイ
JOYO KUN-YOMI
None
STROKES15
RADICAL廾 (55: letter H)
JLPTN1
HALPERN1843/2508
HENSHALL1779/1937
SPAHN4i11.3