The tuteo of Rocha, Uruguay

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Although Uruguay is generally considered <i>voseante, </i>its easternmost department of Rocha is known for its seemingly stable <i>tuteo</i> (T-T). The evidence of a stable <i>tuteo</i> in Rocha to date has been anecdotal. Weyers (2014) studied teenagers&#8217; attitudes toward second person singular forms and found that young speakers in Rocha have a strong sense of pride in their <i>tuteo</i> and link it to their identity. At the same time, they demonstrate openness toward the <i>voseo</i> of Montevideo. The current study builds on Weyers (2014). Here, 55 informants participated in a two-part survey. The first part includes Weyers&#8217; (2014) linguistic attitudes survey in part, the results for which are corroborated by this more heterogeneous sample. The second part was an elicitation task for which speakers produced second person singular imperatives or present indicative forms. The findings show that while <i>tuteo</i> forms are generally preferred, nearly half of the informants preferred the <i>voseo</i> form of <i>ser</i> in an elicitation task. Younger speakers, primarily male, were more apt to prefer <i>sos</i> over <i>eres</i>, citing its sense of informality to the <i>tuteo</i>&#8217;s formality. The data from the current study suggest that Rocha&#8217;s <i>tuteo</i> might not be as stable as commonly thought. This study provides a foundation for subsequent research on the potential for a future shift from <i>tuteo</i> to <i>voseo</i>.


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