Hi amhoanna,amhoanna wrote:... Whereas Holo is branded as a macho language in Taiwan, and this has been part of its downfall. Let a girl speak Holo with gusto, and right away she's just one of the guys. The solution for girls here is to stop speaking Holo, and speak it badly if necessary. 台妹 don't speak Holo anymore. Even radio stations and TV shows can't find women under 35 who'll go on air and speak three sentences back-to-back in Holo and risk exposing how unfeminine they are. And guys can't use Holo to pick up girls. Using Holo would be like saying, "OK, I'm not gonna acknowledge your femininity, I'm just gonna treat you like one of the guys." And she can probably barely speak it anyway. ...
Great to have this independent piece of input from you, based on your personal experience and analysis. It might interest you to know that I listened to a paper being presented at an EATS (European Association of Taiwanese Studies) Conference a number of years ago, precisely on this topic. The researcher (I think a PhD student) had done some research into the sociolinguistics of Taiwanese. Her approach was to give a bunch of students at a technical institute in Taiwan a questionnaire to fill in, and she then analysed the responses. Her findings paralleled your analysis in so many areas! (At least, from my memory) the main findings were:
1) Girls could speak Taiwanese a lot less than boys.
2) Of the boys who did speak Taiwanese, there was a correlation between the more "blue-collar / working-class" the course they were doing, the more they spoke Taiwanese.
3) The boys who spoke Taiwanese spoke it to one another, not to the girls.
4) The girls associated boys who spoke Taiwanese with being "ruffians" or "gangsters".
PS. Point #1 ties in a lot with sociolinguistic studies from all over the world. Apparently, girls are consistently more conscious than boys about "socially prestigious language", so in practically any situation in the world where there is a "High" language and a "Low" language, girls switch over sooner and in greater numbers to the "High" language than boys. (In this context, they also tend to use less slang, and to use more "grammatically correct" forms than boys do.)