A Brief Analysis on Sexism in English

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A Brief Analysis on Sexism in English

By | October 2010
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A Brief Analysis on Sexism in English

Abstract

Sexism is engrained in the language people speak all over the world. English, one of the most popular languages in the world is no exception. The phenomenon of sexism is not only a linguistic one, but basically, a social issue that is far more notice-worthy than the public would have thought. Demonstrations of Sexism in English are too numerous to be totally covered. This paper illustrates demonstrations from the viewpoints of word-structure, word choosing, sentence structure, sentence pattern, meaning and speech, just to name the most common ones. Then it takes an insight into the causes of sexism in English— the historical, cultural, political, economical, educational, physiological and psychological reasons. History needs reforms to keep marching forward, so does the language. It is only when all these dregs are cleared, can the whole human society to be crowned civilized and the language of English, accurate and elegant.

Key Words: Sexism; English; demonstrations; causes.

I. Introduction

As the human society hurdled over the threshold of the 21st century, in a more civilized world, it seems that, women, the huge community which accounts for half the world’s population, is now enjoying an equal status as her counterpart in various aspects of lives. However, if people don’t mind to make the least effort to have a squint at the language people are using every day, they will undoubtedly accept the truth that there’s still lots to be done to erase the embedded sexual prejudice from the majority’s mind for people speak what they think. This is especially true of English, one of the most popular languages in the world. The extinguished Danish Linguist Otto Jesperson once labeled English as the most masculine language among those he’s familiar with in Growth and Structure of the English language published in 1923. Sexism is defied as “the unfair treatment of people, especially women, because of their...
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