ERIC Number: ED381822
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1994-Nov-21
Reference Count: N/A
Should Textbooks Be Politically Correct?...and Several Other Issues.
Mader, Diane Castellano
By getting hold of the dominating verbal structures, political correctness has tried (according to Paul Berman) to "get everyone to abandon certain previously unanalyzed phrases that contain the entire structure of oppressive social domination." Unfortunately, "political correctness" has become a pejorative term used to identify and denigrate what is perceived as liberal orthodoxy. In terms of appropriate usage in communications-related professional situations, a number of conclusions can be reached based on informal surveys: (1) at the moment there is only one textbook publisher that provides fairly comprehensive and specific guidelines to authors and reviewers--and even that guide is incomplete; (2) informal editor-author consultation is the primary method of dealing with bias-free usage; (3) the most widely used style guide, the "APA Publication Manual" provides advice on gender-free usage; (4) journal editors rely on reviewers and associate editors to deal with instances of bias and insensitivity; (5) in addition to concerns about sexism, concern for bias-free usage now includes ageism, racism, ethnic, religious and national slurs and bias against persons with disabilities and bias against lesbians and gay males; (6) many authors welcome the trend toward more sensitive language; (7) bias free language is a concern for newspapers too but there is equal concern that the desire to be inoffensive has undermined debate; (8) some practitioners in speech communication believe that an orthodoxy has cut off major lines of inquiry and research. (Contains 68 notes and 2 appendixes detailing publishers' guidelines and research material.) (TB)
Publication Type: Reports - Evaluative; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers: Politically Correct Communication; Professional Concerns
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the Speech Communication Association (80th, New Orleans, LA, November 19-22, 1994).