ERIC Number: ED168309
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1978
Reference Count: 0
Semantic Polarization as a Measure of Sexism in Language.
Hildebrandt, Herbert W.
Sexism is a social issue in the U.S. which is suggested both by the popular press and the scholarly world. Teachers of English, psychologists, publishers, the U.S. government, the legal field, dictionaries, and especially the women's movement have commented upon and have been involved in the study of sexism, and in the advocacy of change toward more equality. Semantic stereotyping occurs in certain elements across cultures, which can be seen by comparing the written annual reports of selected U.S. and German companies. Neuter terms occur in publications of both cultures, but gender marking is both visually and linguistically evident across cultures; plural subjects are frequent and thereby demand neuter pronouns, but suggest plurality of groups rather than avoidance of sexism; use of generic "he" is infrequent with more use given to the sex-specified pronoun; and women's names as part of an annual report are non-existent in both cultures. Of the two cultures, the German annual report appears to be more male-oriented. However, although more females appear in the U.S. annual report, they are often portrayed in stereotyped roles. (Author/MHP)
Descriptors: Annual Reports, Comparative Analysis, Cultural Context, English, Etymology, Females, German, Language Research, Language Standardization, Language Usage, Literature Reviews, Males, Plurals, Publications, Semantics, Sex Discrimination, Sex Fairness, Sex Role, Sex Stereotypes, Sociolinguistics, Standard Spoken Usage
Publication Type: Reports - Research; Speeches/Meeting Papers; Information Analyses
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at the International Colloquium on Verbal Communication (6th, Vienna, Austria, Summer 1978) ; Pages 14 and 15 marginally legible