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ISSN : 1226-4822(Print)
ISSN : (Online)
The Sociolinguistic Journal of Korea Vol.27 No.3 pp.63-96

An analysis of swearing expressions posted to the internet news: Word play as a cyber-community's language game

Kim Kyu-hyun,Suh Kyung-Hee,Rim Si-Eun


This paper examines the distributional patterns of ‘swearing’ expressions produced in cyberspace in response to NAVER internet news articles. A range of contextual features associated with the use of swearing expressions are identified in terms of their tendency to be formulated as response cries produced as part of affectively-loaded assessments. Serving as a resource for managing face through footing shift, the ways in which swearing expressions are formulated and deployed embody the writer's orientation to treating the cyberspace where they are situated as a form of ‘social situation’ where at least some form of face/impression management is required. The predominant use of their variant forms is analyzed not simply as an attempt to outsmart the institutional attempt at controlling their use but as a collusive act through which the fellow participants are co-implicated in a collective word play organized as a cyberspace-specific form of language game. The tendency of the swearing expressions to cluster and resonate with each other suggests that swearing in cyberspace should be treated not simply as an unconstrained individualized act but as an act embedded in interactively-organized ‘word play’ activities that are obliquely, but crucially, geared to enhancing consensual grounds for shared affective stance among the members of the cyber-community of practice.

인터넷 뉴스 댓글에서의 욕설의 분석 : 사이버 공동체의 언어게임으로서의 언어유희