Is "you guys" a vocative?

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Abeleda

New Member
Spanish - Spain
URGENT!
Hi everyone, I need your help.

I am working on a thesis and I am focusing on Vocatives, specially FAMILIARISERS. The vocatives under analysis are 3: guys, dude and bro.

The problem comes when I'm trying to differenciate between "you" and "you guys": is "you guys" a vocative (familiariser)?

Example: You guys want some coffee?

Help me, please. And thanks beforehand.
 
  • Jektor

    Senior Member
    English (UK)
    Welcome to the forums.

    The "guys" are being spoken to - so that is vocative.
    "You guys" here is more familiar, more "inclusive", than a simple "you" - so I suppose it is a "familiariser".
    .
     

    Abeleda

    New Member
    Spanish - Spain
    Welcome to the forums.

    The "guys" are being spoken to - so that is vocative.
    "You guys" here is more familiar, more "inclusive", than a simple "you" - so I suppose it is a "familiariser".
    .
    Okay, thank you 😌 Taking into consideration the "inclusiveness" now I can analyse my samples!
     

    SevenDays

    Senior Member
    Spanish/AE
    URGENT!
    Hi everyone, I need your help.

    I am working on a thesis and I am focusing on Vocatives, specially FAMILIARISERS. The vocatives under analysis are 3: guys, dude and bro.

    The problem comes when I'm trying to differenciate between "you" and "you guys": is "you guys" a vocative (familiariser)?

    Example: You guys want some coffee?

    Help me, please. And thanks beforehand.
    Is "you guys" vocative? Hmmm, I don't think so, at least not as the sentence is written.

    To begin with, "vocative" in English is entirely function, because in English there is no vocative case/form. In its function, the English vocative can stand alone, and it's not part of ellipsis. In You guys want some coffee? there is ellipsis, because that's the short version of Do you guys want some coffee?, where "you guys" is a noun phrase functioning as subject. By contrast, I see "vocative" in

    You guys, want some coffee?

    where we have two elements

    [You guys], [You want some coffee?]

    with ellipsis in the second element

    [You guys], [Do you want some coffee?]

    meaning that "You guys" can function as vocative (a noun phrase as a term of address). In other words, a comma makes a difference.
     

    Abeleda

    New Member
    Spanish - Spain
    Is "you guys" vocative? Hmmm, I don't think so, at least not as the sentence is written.

    To begin with, "vocative" in English is entirely function, because in English there is no vocative case/form. In its function, the English vocative can stand alone, and it's not part of ellipsis. In You guys want some coffee? there is ellipsis, because that's the short version of Do you guys want some coffee?, where "you guys" is a noun phrase functioning as subject. By contrast, I see "vocative" in

    You guys, want some coffee?

    where we have two elements

    [You guys], [You want some coffee?]

    with ellipsis in the second element

    [You guys], [Do you want some coffee?]

    meaning that "You guys" can function as vocative (a noun phrase as a term of address). In other words, a comma makes a difference.
    Thanks a lot, I can finish my project now!!
     
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