Anglicisms in Music Fandom Terminology: The Idiosyncratic Use of Self-Referential Nouns in the Language of Youth

  • Amanda Roig-Marín University of Cambridge


Within the global phenomenon of music fandom or “fan universe,” this study examines a lexical sub-component of the language of youth which is still unknown to a majority of the general public: the anglicisation of fan base nicknames. Nowadays there exists a prolific coinage of specialised self-referential terms denoting young fans of pop music singers or bands. In peninsular Spanish, such words have been either borrowed from English as direct anglicisms, such as belieber “a Justin Bieber fan” or selenator “a Selena Gómez follower,” or have been idiosyncratically created following English patterns, as in abrahamer (< Abraham Mateo) or casanover (< Casanova). In this article, I will describe the word-formation processes at work in this extremely productive technolect, while pinpointing major morphological trends such as the internalisation of the English suffix -er by Spanish speakers. Likewise, I will address the functions of this anglicised lexis, which will help to understand its impact not just on the conceptualisation of young people’s identity but also on Spanish in general.Keywords: anglicisms; hybrid loans; language of youth; music fandom; self-referential nouns

Author Biography

Amanda Roig-Marín, University of Cambridge
Amanda Roig-Marín holds a Bachelor’s Degree in English Studies (with “Extraordinary Award”) and is currently doing an MPhil in Linguistics at the University of Cambridge. Her main research interests include English lexicology, mutual lexical influences between Spanish and English, and historical linguistics. She has published on these areas and delivered papers at national and international conferences, the latest being held at York St John University, Gothenburg University and the University of Wroclaw.


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