DOI: 10.1075/sic.00084.mic ISSN: 1571-0718

Perceptions of inclusive language in the Spanish of the Southeast

Jim Michnowicz, Rebecca Ronquest, Bailey Armbrister, Nick Chisholm, Rebecca Green, Lindsey Bull, Anne Elkins
  • Literature and Literary Theory
  • Linguistics and Language
  • Language and Linguistics


This study examines the perceptions of inclusive language among first- and second-generation Spanish speakers residing in North Carolina, USA, based on survey data collected from 337 speakers by undergraduates. The survey examines familiarity with innovative inclusive language forms (including -@, -x, and -e), as well as opinions about different forms (including standard morphology forms such as masculine default and noun doubling – i.e., chicos y chicas), and reported use of inclusive forms. A majority of participants expressed negative opinions of innovative forms, and very few reported actually using them in their speech. Acceptance varied based not only on participant social characteristics, but also on the morphology and the context in which the form is used. Exceptions to these trends, as well as the possible future development of inclusive language forms, receive additional attention. Research methodologies with undergraduates are also discussed.