Gender and Language, Vol 11, No 3 (2017)

Women are bitchy but men are sarcastic? Investigating gender and sarcasm

Charlotte Taylor
Issued Date: 13 Sep 2017


In this paper I investigate one aspect of the relationship between gender and mock politeness, focussing in particular on sarcastic behaviours. Previous research into sarcasm as an academic concept has suggested that it is more likely to be performed by males. In the data analysed here, there was no correlation between mock politeness and gender. However, there was a preference for labelling male mock polite behaviour as sarcastic, suggesting that the correlation is not between the academic concept of sarcasm and the male behaviour, but the way that mock polite behaviour is evaluated and labelled. The analysis draws on both corpus linguistics and survey data to further describe the relationship between the metapragmatic labels sarcastic and bitchy and gender of the performer.

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DOI: 10.1558/genl.27906


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