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Poznan Studies in Contemporary Linguistics

Editor-in-Chief: Dziubalska-Kolaczyk, Katarzyna

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1897-7499
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Gender variation of anglicisms in German: The influence of cognitive factors and regional varieties

Alexander Onysko
  • University of Klagenfurt, Klagenfurt, Austria and EURAC Bolzano, Bolzano, Italy
  • :
/ Marcus Callies
  • University of Bremen, Bremen, Germany
  • :
/ Eva Ogiermann
  • King's College, London, United Kingdom
  • :

Abstract

When English nouns are borrowed into German, they need to be assigned grammatical gender. Since grammatical gender information is not present in English, the integration of anglicisms in German offers the opportunity to investigate regularities of gender assignment. Furthermore, it can be expected that the integration of loanwords can cause some variation in the usage of grammatical gender, as has been observed impressionistically for different varieties of German in previous research. This article picks up on both of these issues and first of all discusses "gender assignment schemas" for English loans based on established patterns of gender assignment in German. Secondly, an empirical study investigates gender variation across three major German dialect areas. The findings show a substantial amount of variation among many of the test items. These results are discussed in relation to cognitive schemas of gender assignment and in terms of regional variation.

Keywords: gender assignment; loanwords; anglicisms; German; variation


Received: 2012-10-13

Revised: 2013-01-07

Accepted: 2013-01-23

Published in Print:


Citation Information: Poznań Studies in Contemporary Linguistics PSiCL. Volume 49, Pages 103–136, ISSN (Online) 1897-7499, ISSN (Print) 0137-2459, DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/psicl-2013-0004, January 2013

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