chapter  3
22 Pages

Detection of language idiosyncrasies

WithBarrie Gunter

Women and men display different linguistic styles even when they speak the same language. One of the problems with using language to identify other people’s personality traits is that personality attributes vary in the degree to which they are manifest in “public” versus “private” ways. The beauty of the type of approach is not just that it can place individual authors into specific categories based on their idiosyncratic language styles, but also that it measures degrees of belongingness to those categories. Distinct characteristics of language use have been identified for people who speak the same language with different dialects that tend to be geographically bound. The psycholexical approach to the study of language and personality has been informed by many different theoretical traditions within psychology. Individual differences can be described in many different ways through language, including physical characteristics, attitudes and beliefs, cognitive abilities, interests, temperament, social roles, mannerisms and overt behaviour patterns.