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Title:Language With Character: A Stratified Corpus Comparison of Individual Differences in E-Mail Communication
Authors: Jon Oberlander ; Alastair Gill
Date:Dec 2006
Publication Title:Discourse Processes
Publisher:Lawrence Erlbaum Associates
Publication Type:Journal Article Publication Status:Published
Volume No:42(3) Page Nos:239-270
DOI:10.1207/s15326950dp4203_1 ISBN/ISSN:0163-853X
To what extent does the wording and syntactic form of people's writing reflect their personalities? Using a bottom-up stratified corpus comparison, rather than the top-down content analysis techniques that have been used before, we examine a corpus of e-mail messages elicited from individuals of known personality, as measured by the Eysenck Personality Questionnaire-Revised (S. Eysenck, Eysenck, & Barrett, 1985). This method allowed us to isolate linguistic features associated with different personality types, via both word and part-of-speech n-gram analysis. We investigated the extent to which extraversion is associated with linguistic features involving positivity, sociability, complexity, and implicitness and neuroticism is associated with negativity, self-concern, emphasis, and implicitness. Numerous interesting features were uncovered. For instance, higher levels of extraversion involved a preference for adjectives, whereas lower levels of neuroticism involved a preference for adverbs. However, neither positivity nor negativity was as prominent as expected, and there was little evidence for implicitness.
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author = { Jon Oberlander and Alastair Gill },
title = {Language With Character: A Stratified Corpus Comparison of Individual Differences in E-Mail Communication},
journal = {Discourse Processes},
publisher = {Lawrence Erlbaum Associates},
year = 2006,
month = {Dec},
volume = {42(3)},
pages = {239-270},
doi = {10.1207/s15326950dp4203_1},
url = {},

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