Definition of gaijin in US English:



  • (in Japan) a foreigner.

    ‘in Japan his pale eyes marked him as a gaijin’
    as modifier ‘the sports dailies' vilification of the Tigers' gaijin manager’
    • ‘Again volumes aimed at a gaijin [foreign] audience in English on the fiscal policy of growth in Japan after World War II have also been lacking.’
    • ‘At the station I'm taken into a interview room and they give me a statement, conveniently prepared for me, apologising for not carrying my gaijin card.’
    • ‘There are some local players in the league but most are gaijin - the Japanese term for resident foreigner - and the Celts play in the first division against teams such as the Swiss Kickers and British Embassy FC.’
    • ‘As it happens, the dysfunctional deniers behind ‘Pride’ also had their gaijin enablers, though you certainly wouldn't know that from reading stories about the film in gaijin-owned publications.’
    • ‘Collins' goal is to become the best-connected gaijin in Japan, an insider in a system where insider status counts for everything.’
    • ‘When I first came to Japan they were the cheap night out, with bright, glaring strip lights, loud music, easy point-at-the-picture menus, big spaces for a dozen gaijin to sit around and complain about work and big, cheap beers.’
    • ‘After 37 years at the same twice-a-week spot in the paper, Jean was finished with her self-assigned task of advising the gaijin population on how best to get by in the sometimes-confusing world of daily life in Japan.’
    • ‘I spent all but the two of my first sixteen years living in Japan, so even if I look like a gaijin, which I do, I am from Japan.’
    • ‘Visiting time on the ward is from midday but I think they make exceptions for spooked gaijin with a wild look in their eyes (or possibly they make exceptions for any father to be whose wife is expecting soon, I don't know).’
    • ‘The fear is that if it has to borrow abroad to pay for this stuff, Japan will have to offer the gaijin ever-higher rates - which will smother the already weak economy.’
    • ‘Now then, if I had to list by category the most heroic and selfless professions on earth, nursing would be right up there along with firefighting, being Prime Minister of England and playing baseball as a gaijin for the Kintetsu Buffaloes.’
    • ‘From a Japanese standpoint, she would take to task the gaijin ladies in Japan who refused to comply with traditions with a condescending attitude, at the same time chastising Japanese obatarian who despaired of the big-nosed foreigners.’
    • ‘Do it now, since in Japan nobody will tell you until you have gone too far, a situation that is very easy for a gaijin to get into.’
    • ‘It was something a little bit personal for me as it is related with one of the best experiences as a gaijin in Japan.’
    • ‘His deceptive welcoming smile was in fact a ‘I've caught myself a gaijin!’’
    • ‘With Karl on a hunt for running shoes to fit his gaijin (foreigner feet) we stopped in at a mall and all got freaked out again by the commercialism and big white Americans from the nearby army base.’
    • ‘This is a difficult concept for the gaijin to grasp when brought up on the premise that the Japanese are a consensus society.’
    • ‘As soon as someone spots a gaijin playing, they'll join in and kick your butt into the middle of next Tuesday with a secret character wearing a nappy.’
    • ‘The Kaisha Society, founded in 1987 to assist the then-few gaijin who work with Japanese companies, is expanding its focus to include assistance to needy Japanese youngsters who have been afflicted with cancer.’
    • ‘Looking around this country through the eyes of a gaijin - a foreigner - things are just different.’


Japanese, contraction of gaikoku-jin, from gaikoku ‘foreign country’ + jin ‘person’.