Language | COMMUNICATION CUES

Groups call for redefinition of elderly

Sample newspaper article

65歳から74歳の人は数十年前の同年齢の人より肉体的にも精神的にもずっと若く、高齢者として分類されるべきではないと2つの学会が 提言した。日本老年学会と日本老年医学会は1月5日、高齢者の定義は現在の65歳以上ではなく、少なくとも75歳とし、65歳から74歳は 「准高齢者」、また90歳以上には「超高齢者」という新語を提案した。 学会は政府に対して、准高齢者は介助を必要としている人ではなく 社会の支え手として再定義するよう求めた。この提言が、社会保障 制度の再検討の議論を引き起こすのではないかという懸念が広がっている。 (Jan. 6)

Words and phrases

数十年前 (sūjūnen mae) decades ago; 同年齢の人 (dōnenrei-no hito) predecessors; 肉体的 (nikutaiteki) physically; 精神的 (seishinteki) mentally; ずっと若く (zutto wakaku) much younger; 高齢者 (kōreisha) elderly; 分類される (bunrui-) classified; 学会 (gakkai) academic societies; 提言 (teigen) proposal; 日本老齢学会 (Nihon Rōrei Gakkai) Japan Gerontological Society ; 日本老年 医学会 (Nihon Rōnen Igakukai) Japan Geriatrics Society; 定義 (teigi) definition; 現在の (genzai-) at present; 少なくとも (suku-) at least; 準高齢者 (jun-kōreisha) pre-elderly; 超高齢者 (chō-kōreisha) super-elderly; 新語 (shingo) new term; 提案した (teian-) proposed; 政府 (seifu) government; 介助 (kaijo) help; 必要としている (hitsuyō-) need; 社会 (shakai) society; 支え手 (sasa-te) supporters; 再定義する (saiteigi-) reclassify; 求めた (moto-) called on; 社会保障制度 (shakai hoshō seido) social security systems; 再検討 (saikentō) reviewing; 議論 (giron) discussion; 引き起こす (hi-o-) spark; 懸念 (kenen) concern; 広がっている (hiro-) arose

Sample radio or television report

65-sai-kara 75-sai-no hito-wa sūjūnen mae-no dōnenrei-no hito-yori nikutaiteki-ni-mo seishinteki-ni-mo zutto wakaku, kōreisha-to-shite bunrui-sareru beki-dewa-nai-to futatsu-no gakkai-ga teigen-shimashita. Nihon Rōrei Gakkai-to Nihon Rōnen Igakukai-wa 1-gatsu itsuka, kōreisha-no teigi-wa genzai-no 65-sai-ijō-dewa-naku, sukunakutomo 75-sai-to-shi, 65-sai kara 75-sai-wa jun-kōreisha, mata 90-sai-ijō-ni-wa chō-kōreisha-to-iu shingo-o teian-shimashita. Gakkai-wa seifu-ni taishite, jun-kōreisha-wa kaijo-o hitsuyō-to shiteiru hito-dewa-naku shakai-no sasaete-to-shite saiteigi-suru-yō motomemashita. Kono teigen-ga, shakai hoshō seido-no saikentō-no giron-o hikiokosu-no-dewa-nai-ka-to-iu kenen-ga hirogatte-imasu.

Translation

Japanese aged between 65 and 74 should no longer be classified as elderly because they are physically and mentally much younger than their predecessors were decades ago, according to a proposal backed by two academic societies. On Jan. 5 the Japan Gerontological Society and the Japan Geriatrics Society said that the definition of elderly should be used for people who are at least 75, rather than 65 at present. They also proposed a new term for those 90 and over: “superelderly.” Defining those between 65 and 74 as “pre-elderly,” the groups called on the government to reclassify them as supporters of society rather than people who need help from it. There are concerns that the proposal will spark discussions about reviewing the nation’s social security systems.

Conversation between acquaintances

A: Nihon-no gakkai-ga, kōreisha-wa 75-sai-ijō-to-suru-yō-ni teigen-shita sō-desu-yo.

(I heard that Japanese academic societies have proposed that only those over 75 be considered “elderly people.”)

B: 65-sai kara 74-sai-wa sūjūnen mae-no dōnenrei-no hito-yori zutto wakai-desu-kara-ne.

(That’s because Japanese between 65 and 74 seem much younger than their forerunners did decades ago, right?)

Conversation between husband and wife

H: 65-sai kara 74-sai-wa jun-kōreisha-to teigi-sareru yō-da.

(It has been suggested that those between 65 and 74 should be classified as “pre-elderly.”)

W: Nenkin-no uketori-kaishi-ga 75-sai ijō-ni naru-no-kashira.

(I worry that the age at which we can start receiving our pensions will be 75 years old.)

(No. 1341)