Variability and identity: The use of pronouns of address by students of Spanish as a foreign language

Affiliation

Department of Spanish and Portuguese, Temple University, College of Liberal Arts, 4th Floor Anderson Hall, 1114 Polett Walk, Philadelphia, PA 19122 USA

Abstract

This study investigates the relationship between L2 identity and pronouns of address variability by learners of Spanish as a foreign language in the United States. Two different classes on the East Coast were observed and recorded: a middle-school basic Spanish class and a university middle-advanced Spanish class; university students were also surveyed. The main objectives of this research were to describe the impact that level of proficiency in Spanish has on the use of pronouns of address by Spanish as a foreign language students and to explore the extent to which identity shapes the variability of pronouns of address in learners of Spanish as a foreign language. For the data analyses, chi-squared tests and Cramer’s V measurement were run. The analysis shows that, when interacting, speakers have their own linguistic identity and is their main pronoun of address. This article concludes that there is no variability and the usage of pronouns of address by Spanish learners is stabilized, being is the mainly used pronoun. Also, students are mentally conscious of the contexts in which they are expected to use either or usted, but, in practice, they only use . Finally, identity and imagined communities might shape speakers’ variability in terms of lexicography, but not morphologically with pronouns of address.

Keywords

variability; second language identity; Spanish as a foreign language; pronouns of address in Spanish; Spanish in the US

Publication Date

June 28, 2021

Issue

Volume 8, Issue 1

Citation information

Guarin, Daniel. 2021. “Variability and identity: The use of pronouns of address by students of Spanish as a foreign language.” Language. Text. Society 8 (1). https://ltsj.online/2021-08-1-guarin.

BibTeX

@Article{Guarin2021,
author = {Guarin, Daniel},
journal = {Language. Text. Society},
title = {Variability and identity: The use of pronouns of address by students of Spanish as a foreign language},
year = {2021},
issn = {2687-0487},
number = {1},
volume = {8},
url = {https://ltsj.online/2021-08-1-guarin},
}

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