Writings on the bridges of Pabradė: a sociolinguistic aspect

Joana Gruodytė

The article deals with graffiti on two bridges in Pabradė, which are covered with it. As the topic has not been addressed in any detail in Lithuania, efforts were made to give a well-grounded presentation of the research material, including the description of the object, the form of presentation and its contents. An analysis of bridge graffiti has shown that the authors of the illegal graffiti are school-age teenagers of both sexes who seek to monumentalise themselves, express a positive or negative attitude towards the person being described, declare love, sexual intercourse, get to know other people, show their liking for one or another band or performer. Most of the graffiti pieces are in Lithuanian, while Polish inscriptions are not so common. We can assume that the linguistic breakdown of graffiti points to the actors' understanding of the language as the most appropriate (spoken and understood, prestigious hence memorisable and impressive) for the purpose of making graffiti inscriptions.