[LMB] OT: Gender Applied to Inanimate Objects

alayne at twobikes.ottawa.on.ca alayne at twobikes.ottawa.on.ca
Fri Sep 19 20:25:56 BST 2008


On Fri, 19 Sep 2008, Howard Brazee wrote:
> That said, while I enjoyed /Babel-17/, and much of the discussions we 
> had back then about how language constructs influence behavior - we 
> haven't seen that this is actually true. We can't chart sexist language 
> vs. sexist behavior in any meaningful way.

Sources, please?

I will note that when many city councils in Canada switched to calling 
their members "councillors" instead of "aldermen", that coincided with an 
increase in the power, visibility, and numbers of women city councillors. 
It may be that the causality was the other way, but I would argue that the 
gender-neutral (and perfectly appropriate) noun didn't hurt.

-- 
Alayne McGregor
alayne at twobikes.ottawa.on.ca

"Only the rigor and discipline of the delimited can create art. Musicologists considering
Bach, who worked within desperately restrictive format, will concur as will those
considering the sonata form. The sonnet and the eight-bar chorus of almost all popular song
and operetta give similar testimony. It was the very restraint with which science fiction
was cloaked from the outset which gave the genre its discipline and force." -- Barry Malzberg



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