Last month, publisher Iwanami Shoten was criticized for its definition of “LGBT” in the newest edition of Kojien, which is considered to be the most authoritative dictionary of the Japanese language. The complaint was specifically about the meaning of the acronym’s “T” portion, which stands for “transgender.” Kojien lumped “transgender” in with “lesbian,” “gay” and “bisexual” as describing persons “whose sexual orientations are different from the majority.”

In fact, transgender describes a person whose gender identity differs from the one they were assigned at birth. Iwanami Shoten admitted the mistake and last week corrected the entry, but media reports have tended to point out that the inaccuracy reflected misconceptions that are widespread in Japanese society.

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