Rethinking Language and Gender Research : Theory and Practice book cover
1st Edition

Rethinking Language and Gender Research
Theory and Practice

ISBN 9780582265738
Published November 12, 1996 by Routledge
316 Pages

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Book Description

Rethinking Language and Gender Research is the first book focusing on language and gender to explicitly challenge the dichotomy of female and male use of language. It represents a turning point in language and gender studies, addressing the political and social consequences of popular beliefs about women's language and men's language and proposing new ways of looking at language and gender. The essays take a fresh approach to the study of subjects such as language and sex and the use of language to produce and maintain power and prestige.

Topics explored in this text include sex and the brain; the language of a rape hearing; teenage language; radio talk show exchanges; discourse strategies of African American women; political implications for language and gender studies; the relationship between sex and gender and the construction of identity through language.

A useful introductory chapter sets the articles in context, explaining the relationships that exist between them, and full cross-referencing between articles and an extensive index allow for easy access to information. The interdisciplinary approach of the text, the wide-range of methodologies presented, and the comprehensive review of the current literature will make this book invaluable reading for all upper-level undergraduate students, postgraduate students and researchers in the fields of linguistics, sociolinguistics, gender and cultural studies.

Table of Contents

Contributors, Editors's Preface; Acknowledgements

1. The question of questions: beyond binary thinking, Janet M. Bing and Victoria L. Bergvall
2. The language-gender interface: challenging co-optation, Deborah Cameron
3. Language and gender research in an experimental setting, Alice F. Freed
4. Floor management and power strategies in adolescent conversation, Alice Greenwood
5. Women, men and prestige speech forms: a critical review, Deborah James
6. Storytellers and gatekeepers in economics, Livia Polanyi and Diana Strassmann
7. Consensual sex or sexual harassment: negotiating meaning, Susan Ehrilch and Ruth King
8. Constructing and enacting gender through discourse: negotiating multiple roles as female engineering students, Victoria L. Bergvall
9. Dealing with gender identity as a sociolinguistic variable, Miriam Meyerhoff
10. Shifting gender positions among Hindi-speaking hijras, Kira Hall and Veronica O'Donovan
11. Black feminist theory and African American women's linguistic practice, Mary Bucholtz


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Victoria L. Bergvall is Associate Professor of Linguistics, Michigan Technological University, and has published articles and book chapters on language and gender as well as African syntax.
Janet M. Bing is Professor of Linguistics and a member of the Women's Studies faculty at Old Dominion University. She has published numerous articles on gender issues and on phonology, and a book, Aspects of English Prosody.
Alice F. Freed is Professor of Linguistics and a member of the Women's Studies faculty at Montclair State University. She has published extensively on language and gender, and authored a book, The Semantics of English Aspectual Complementation.