Ryan Howe

Date Approved


Degree Type

Open Access Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)


English Language and Literature

Committee Member

Veronica Grondona, Ph.D., Chair

Committee Member

Helen Aristar-Dry, Ph.D.


The present study is a corpus-based approach using both the British National Corpus (BNC) and the Blog Authorship Corpus (BAC) to identify variance in spoken use of fuck between genders, age groups, and social classes. The resulting analysis shows that there is little variance in use between male and female speakers, while use is most prevalent during the teens and early 20s. This study offers further support of the idea that there are two distinct meanings of fuck that can be separated into two distinct words, fuck1 and fuck2, by showing that a non-referential definition of fuck (fuck2) is the dominant use between all genders, ages, and social classes.

Included in

Linguistics Commons