An analysis of the (re)constructions of gender identities through language use on selected Facebook pages of Namibian youth: A case study of the University of Namiia's postgraduate students select="/dri:document/dri:meta/dri:pageMeta/dri:metadata[@element='title']/node()"/>

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dc.contributor.author Matheus, Gerhard
dc.date.accessioned 2021-08-10T08:07:34Z
dc.date.available 2021-08-10T08:07:34Z
dc.date.issued 2021
dc.identifier.uri http://hdl.handle.net/11070/3058
dc.description A research project submitted in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the Degree of Master of Arts in English en_US
dc.description.abstract The rising popularity of social networking sites among university students has led to invisible lines between students’ offline and online identities. Students are often lured into expressing themselves openly on social networks in ways that expose their personalities. The study explored how the University of Namibia’s post-graduate students (re)construct their gender identities on Facebook through language use. The researcher further explored whether students performed and sustained the societally assigned gender roles on virtual spaces as often as they may do during daily face-toface conversations. Previous scholars have provided inadequate data surrounding aspects such as socio-pragmatic competence, cyber language and gender differences among post-graduate students, and this has prompted this study. By employing the Linguistic Appraisal Theory, the Difference Approach and the Dominance Approach, the researcher pinpointed different ways of gender performance and presentation on social networks. A qualitative approach was used; ethnographic analysis was performed on Facebook walls of 12 male and 12 female students. Furthermore, one-on-one interviews were conducted with eight participants. It emerged that male participants use language that portrays dominance and order (harsh and direct). On the other hand, female participants use polite and subordinate language when engaging in conversations in virtual spaces. It is thus safe to conclude that when engaging in conversations, post-graduate students present ‘an extended offline self’ in virtual spaces. Social networks grant them an opportunity, not to reconstruct identities, but rather extend their already existing ones into more socially acceptable ones. The choice of language employed in virtual environments is similar to the traditional patterns of the language; this shows that Facebook users are still deeply engrossed in culture and maintain societal expectations on virtual environments. en_US
dc.language.iso en en_US
dc.publisher University of Namibia en_US
dc.title An analysis of the (re)constructions of gender identities through language use on selected Facebook pages of Namibian youth: A case study of the University of Namiia's postgraduate students en_US
dc.type Thesis en_US


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