ERIC Number: ED168346
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1979-Jan
Reference Count: 0
Don't Dear Me. Working Papers in Sociolinguistics, No. 53.
Wolfson, Nessa; Manes, Joan
The factors that are involved in the choice of address to women as compared to men by speakers of American English were investigated in public interactions regarding provision of a service. In addition to proper names, there are two major types of address forms in general usage: the traditional respect forms, such as "ma'am" and "sir," and the so-called terms of endearment. A third possibility is that people may avoid using any address form at all. It was found that two of the three major address types occurring in service encounters can be and are used in absolutely parallel fashion to men and women. The use of the third address type, terms of endearment, in a non-reciprocal pattern paralleling its use by adults to children, carries the implication that the addressee is in some way subordinate to the speaker. Cases were found in which women were addressed by these intimate forms while men were not, but the opposite was not found. (SW)
Descriptors: Females, Interaction Process Analysis, Language Research, Language Role, Language Styles, Language Variation, North American English, Psycholinguistics, Regional Dialects, Sex Role, Sexism in Language, Social Attitudes, Sociolinguistics, Speech Communication, Speech Habits, Verbal Communication
Southwest Educational Development Laboratory, 211 East Seventh Street, Austin, Texas 78701
Publication Type: Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Sponsor: National Inst. of Education (DHEW), Washington, DC.
Authoring Institution: Southwest Educational Development Lab., Austin, TX.