Onomastics in Interaction With Other Branches of Science. Volume 2.

Gender Aspects of Contemporary Russian Unconventional Nomination (Based on Nicknames Coined in Gender-Homogeneous Groups)

Anna Tsepkova
Independent researcher


The paper explores the ways the gender of the nominee and the nominator impacts contemporary nicknaming practices. The analysis is based on data collected from 2014 to 2021 from school, college and university students based in Novosibirsk, Russia. The analysis mainly focuses on the two largest subsamples characterized by gender homogeneity of the participants of a nicknaming act, namely, nicknames, given by males to males (46%) and those bestowed by females onto females (29.4%). Quantitative and interpretational analyses of motivational and connotative aspects of unconventional nomination in the two subsamples shows that Russian nicknaming practices conform to traditional concepts of masculinity (dominance, confidence, largeness, strength, assertiveness, directness, aggressiveness, emotional restrain) and femininity (subordinance, diminutiveness, fragility, vulnerability, emotionality, affection, flexibility, compliance), despite changes in gender roles and gender identities observed in contemporary societies. Keywords nickname, gender, unconventional anthroponym, motivation, connotation

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