University of Helsinki Department of Romance Languages

Department of Romance Languages

Information on the project:

Contact information:

Department of Romance Languages
P.O. Box 24 (Unioninkatu 40)
00014 University of Helsinki
phone +358-(0)9-191 22 483
fax +358-(0)9-191 22 908

Contact persons:
Juhani Härmä

Eva Havu

Johanna Isosävi

Social Deixis: Address Terms as a Mirror of Societal Transformations

The project has been under way at the Department of Romance languages of the University of Helsinki since 2000. Its objective is to chart the changes that have taken place in the late 20th century in the usage of address terms in three Romance languages (French, Spanish, Italian) and to describe their current usage and future development trends. The concept of 'address term' is understood broadly in the study: it is used to refer to T/V pronouns, nominal forms of address (monsieur, madame, etc.) as well as to expressions used selectively depending on which (T or V) pronoun the speaker uses (such as greetings: Ciao / Bonjour).

The project has received funding from the University’s research funds for the period 2005-2007.