adjective Linguistics.
  1. pertaining to or being a significant unit that functions in contrast with other units in a language or other system of behavior.
Compare etic.

Origin of emic

1950–55; extracted from phonemic; coined by U.S. linguist Kenneth L. Pike (born 1912)
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Word Origin and History for emic

1954, from phonemic.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper