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ERIC Number: ED137838
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1976-Sep
Pages: 17
Abstractor: N/A
Reference Count: 0
Changes in Pronominal Usage.
Adamsky, Cathryn
The pervasiveness of sexism in our society is reflected in language structure and usage. In pronominal usage, masculine singular forms are assumed to include the feminine, although, when referring to female sex-role-typed occupations, "she" is used. In this research, the effect of the instructor's use of "she," as the generic singular, on student language use and student attitude was investigated. The rationale was that pronoun reversal may expose to the hearer the sex bias in the language, leading to a perception of the need for change in the language. Results indicated a change in the use of pronouns, with more specific use of "he," a reduction of the use of "he" as the generic singular, and the use of "she" as a generic. Most students felt a need for an inclusive pronoun in the language. Student response to questionnaires indicated an awareness both of sexism in our society and of the role of language in maintaining sexism. Change in use of pronouns was not considered difficult by the males in the group. (Author/JM)
Publication Type: Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: N/A
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the American Psychological Association (84th, Washington, D.C., September 3-7, 1976)