Encyclopedia of Chinese Language and Linguistics

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Gay Language
(1,700 words)

When linguists speak of "gay language", they may be talking about the way issues having to do with sexuality are encoded in a particular language, they may be referring to the "special language" associated with gay subcultures in a particular speech community, or they may be more interested in the strategic ways gays and lesbians use language for personal or political purposes, to communicate desire, for example, or negotiate social identity (Cameron and Kulick 2003).

Although homosexual behavior has been practiced in China for thousands of years and in some periods of…

Cite this page
Rodney H. JONES, “Gay Language”, in: Encyclopedia of Chinese Language and Linguistics, General Editor Rint Sybesma. Consulted online on 01 April 2023 <http://dx.doi.org/10.1163/2210-7363_ecll_COM_00000162>
First published online: 2015

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