Volume 12, Issue 2
  • ISSN 2211-3770
  • E-ISSN: 2211-3789
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Pornography is commonly criticized for allegedly representing and promoting sexual dominance of men over women. Studies have shown varying results, with no scientific consensus reached on the matter. To contribute to the discussion with empirical discourse analysis evidence, I examine the linguistic choices reflected in a corpus of erotic novels to test whether there are gendered patterns of agency in the representation of sexual interactions. The construal of prominence is correlated to the notion of agency to find which participant specifies the trajector status and agent role in every relational expression. Results show that male participants take prominence over females in an overwhelming majority of the cases, while expressions with plural agency are marginal. The approach of this paper, combining cognitive grammar with linguistic participation roles, provides comprehensive and realistic results by attempting to operationalize agency as the linguistic expression of a particular cognitive pathway.


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