¿La fiscal o la fiscala? Un estudio sociolingüístico sobre el uso de denominaciones con referentes mujeres
¿La fiscal o la fiscala? A sociolinguistic study on the use of professional designations with female referents
The thesis is a sociolinguistic investigation of how native Spaniards designate female professionals in 40 occupations. Due to the lack of norms in this field, it is characterized by variation and vacillation, even by the Royal Spanish Academy. The main objective of the study is to describe quantitatively how the use of the linguistic variable (1. the feminine: la abogada; 2. the common gender: la abogado; 3. a modifying attribute: la mujer abogado/la abogado mujer), is determined by different social factors (sex, age and education level). The results of these calculations, together with those of the analyses of acceptance, also serve as the basis of our second objective, which is to explain why certain designations with reference to women are preferred in the common gender by the majority of the 600 informants mainly proceeding from the Madrid area. The selection of the 40 professions is partly based on their morphological structure, partly on other factors, which means that the material includes job titles of different types and status, thus representing various socioeconomic levels in the Spanish society. The results of the quantitative analysis show that 22 of the 40 professions are preferred in the common gender by the majority of the informants. The conclusions regarding the impact of the social factors confirm a majority use of feminine designations by the women, the oldest age group and the speakers with the highest level of education, respectively. The qualitative analysis shows that different intra and extra linguistic factors, such as phonological, morphological, semantic, syntactic, cultural and social ones, on the cognitive level form the speakers’ attitudes to the different designations, which together with the prevailing pragmatic factors determine the election of variant in each case. Owing to the fact that the preferences vary not only from one speaker to another but also within the speakers, i.e. from one designation to another, our conclusion is that no common denominator can be found that explains the resistance, but that idiosyncrasy predominates in this field, which complicates the prediction of the future use.
Göteborgs universitet, Institutionen för språk och litteraturer
Comité editorial: Andrea Castro Richard Sörman
professional designations in the feminine
job titles with reference to women, gender