Language & Gender: Co-Operation vs Competition

Here are two single-sex groups of fifteen year-olds discussing what they should take with them to a desert island. First why don’t we analyse them.

Group A

S:
wouldn’t you need sunglasses?¹
C:
yeah, that’s what I think
S:
because it would be really² hot and protect yourself from the sun³ and you’d be able to see more
G:
yeah, but if you’re trying to live, does it matter
[ whether you can see
C:
[you can go blind
G:
exactly, but if you’re trying to survive, does it really matter?
C:
(sounding irritated) I wouldn’t
[want to go blind
S:
[it does because if you were blind you wouldn’t be able to see what you were doing and you would end up dying anyway.  You’d have less chance of surviving anyway
G:
yeah, but you’re not likely to go blind unless you’re looking right up at the sun
1= Negative politeness features and use of the negative interrogative 
2= Intensifier
3= Feminine topic 
4= Agreement and feedback to the speaker
5= power violation which is usually associated with males
6 = Showing annoyance 
7 = sarcastic 
8= pseudo agreement perhaps for politeness 
Other factors
The topic is more feminine yet due to the linguistic nature of the text  e.g. the power violations the text is competitive
Group B
C:
( pointing)¹ right, what did you put?
M:
compass
C:
(pointing) what did you put?
T:
I put sunglasses
C:
right, I put the parachute ( gives ;long explanation for choosing it)²
Other voices:
mirror, mirror……the torch
C:
and you could use a gun, couldn’t you? ³You could shoot– 
H:
you could shoot the pilot
C:
right, So has anyone changed their mind?(pointing) what do you think?
H:
I say compass
T:
I think sunglasses are quite important because you have to be able to see what it says on the compass for a start ( laughter from the group)
H:
you could just go loke that ( mimes shading eyes ) shut your eyes for a moment
C:
right. You go (pointing) say why you thought the first aid kit.
1= aggressive use of paralinguistic features
2= Long turn without interruptions on a g male topic
3= Tag question and a rhetorical one 
4= Again a stereotypical male conversation
5 = co-operative interruption 
6 = Similar to a hedge
7 = Good sense of humour 
Other comments
There are more use of paralinguistic features and generally there is more structural cohesion with the use of  adjacency pairs etc.
Can you tell which are the girls and which are the boys?

I believe Group A are girls and Group B are boys because even though women are more stereotypically co-operative and boys are competitive, the topics and features used by Group A are more female and it makes sense to be competitive because they are just 15 in a competitive environment. What do you think?

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