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Guy, Guys, and Gender Neutrality Sean McLennan Indiana University CLS 40 April 15, 2004.

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Presentation on theme: "Guy, Guys, and Gender Neutrality Sean McLennan Indiana University CLS 40 April 15, 2004."— Presentation transcript:

1 Guy, Guys, and Gender Neutrality Sean McLennan Indiana University CLS 40 April 15, 2004

2 Sean McLennan - CLS 40 Introduction A server in a restaurant: Good evening! Can I get you guys something to drink?

3 Sean McLennan - CLS 40 Corpus Analysis chosen for colloquial nature static community restricted demographics known community where referents are more clearly interpretable computational tractability

4 Sean McLennan - CLS 40 Corpus Analysis messages sent to a closed list approx. 70 participants (primarily Canadian undergraduate students) nearly equal gender ratio November October 2002

5 Sean McLennan - CLS 40 Corpus Analysis Factors examined: number: singular vs. plural grammatical position: subject, object, indirect object, vocative phrasal co-occurrence: determiners, you, hey/hi etc. gender composition of referent: male, female, mixed, unknown, genderless

6 Sean McLennan - CLS 40 Corpus Analysis: Results 73% total = %

7 Sean McLennan - CLS 40 Corpus Analysis: Results NumberGram. Pos.Phrase Co-occ. 98% you 3% you

8 Sean McLennan - CLS 40 Corpus Analysis: Results Accounts for 98% of the recorded instances

9 Sean McLennan - CLS 40 Discussion guymanhe high freq (73%)* low freq (5%)* low freq (3%) highly pred. by gram. context marginally pred. by gram. context not pred. by gram. context shift in dir. of neutrality shift in dir. of gender specificity prescriptivist imposition non-gendered imagery(?) gendered imagery balances lexical paradigms in conflict with existing paradigm used as a generic: * current study Graham (1975)


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