Our university was originally established under the name Kyoto School of Foreign Languages in May of 1947. It was soon after World War Ⅱ, when a great demand had arisen for an international understanding which would lead to world peace. One of the urgent requirements to accomplish this goal was to develop young Japanese men and women who could not only master foreign languages, but understand cultures, economies and societies of the world.
To master a foreign language, however, is not an easy task for Japanese. One of the reasons for this sad truth lies in our linguistic system, which has a peculiar structure. Another reason is non-linguistic. We have exclusively developed our own customs and traditions through our unique historical and geographical background. In other words, people in a country surrounded by the sea such as Japan tend to have far more trouble in learning a foreign language than those residing in countries bordering immediately on others. Thus, we believe that having linguistic talent is not good enough to overcome this handicap; we Japanese must have incessant drive and go through thousands of repetitions to acquire foreign languages.
The motto of our university, "PAX MUNDI PER LINGUAS (World Peace through Languages)" has represented the founders' strong wish for achieving world peace. In addition to the Latin motto, the importance of "an indomitable spirit" has also been emphasized and valued as a primary basis for education and research, because that is what the founders believed to be an essential quality for students of foreign languages to possess.