In a comment to "Character amnesia and kanji attachment " (2/24/16), I wrote:
For the last 40 years and more, I have informally tracked kanji usage in Japanese books, newspapers, journals, magazines, signs, notices, labels, directions, messages, reports, business cards (meishi), packaging, etc., etc. and the conclusion I reach is that the proportion of kanji used now is much less than it was four-five decades ago. Conversely, the proportion of katakana, hiragana, rōmaji, and English has increased dramatically.
Has anyone done studies of this phenomenon in a more formal, rigorous way? And I would suggest extending the investigation back a hundred years or more.
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