Language planning and language policy formulation have been carried on with varying degrees of intensity in Japan since the turn of the century, beginning in 1902 with the setting up of the first National Language Research Council as the result of a steadily increasing groundswell of private activity calling for language reform. Language planning, or consciously engineered language change, has been variously defined in the growing body of literature on. this subject. For Joshua Fishman, foremost and founding scholar of the sociology of language, it is 'the organised pursuit of solutions to language problems, typically at the national level';' for Rubin and Jernudd, 'deliberate language change; that is, changes in the systems of language code or speaking or both that are planned by organisations that are established for such purposes or given a mandate to fulfil such purposes'.2 More recently, Weinstein has defined language planning as 'a government authorised, long term sustained and conscious effort to alter a language itself or to change a language's functions in a society for the purpose of solving communication problems'/ and Eastman as 'the activity of manipulating language as a social resource in order to reach objectives set out by planning agencies which, in general, are an area's governmental, educational, economic, and linguistic authorities'.4 The common strands in these definitions are the presence, either stated or implied, of an official body through which language planning activities are channelled and the existence of the element of deliberation, of purposeful organisation of the activities pursued. A looser definition, still incorporating the element of conscious intent but not restricting the planners to authoritative agencies, is offered by Cooper: 'Language planning refers to deliberate efforts to influence the behaviour of others with respect to the acquisition, structure, or functional allocation of their language codes'.5