This study analyzes the effect of sociolinguistic variables on the frequency of swear words in Irish English based on the private dialogue section of the Irish component of the International Corpus of English (ICE). The results of mixed-effects regression models show that speakers between 19 and 33 are substantially more likely to use swear words compared with speakers aged 34 and older. With respect to gender, the results confirm a significant gender difference as men are significantly more likely to use swear words compared with women. Furthermore, speakers from the Republic of Ireland, i.e. speakers of Southern Irish English, are significantly less likely to use swear words compared with speakers from Northern Ireland. Finally, speakers are more likely to use swear words in same-gender conversations compared with mixed-gender conversation irrespective of gender.
Lingua – Elsevier
Published: Jul 1, 2018
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