From gay language to normative discourse
A diachronic corpus analysis of Lavender Linguistics conference abstracts 1994–2012
A corpus of abstracts from the Lavender Languages and Linguistics Conference was subjected to a diachronic keywords analysis in order to identify concepts which had either stayed in constant focus or became more or less popular over time.1 Patterns of change in the abstracts corpus were compared against the Corpus of Contemporary American English (COCA) in order to identify the extent that linguistic practices around language and sexuality were reflected in wider society. The analysis found that conference presenters had gradually begun to frame their analyses around queer theory and were using fewer sexual identity labels which were separating, collectivising and hierarchical in favour of more equalising and differentiating terminology. A number of differences between conference-goers’ language use and the language of general American English were identified and the paper ends with a critical discussion of the method used and the potential consequences of some of the findings.
Keywords: abstracts, sexuality, language, corpus, diachronic
Published online: 02 August 2013
Cited by 9 other publications
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