Genderless is a concept that originated in early sociolinguistics which compares and contrasts male and female speech styles. Male and female speech styles are defined as “two stable, clear-cut, and opposite gendered varieties” (256). Genderless can be described as a linguistic variety or code used predominantly by one sex/gender. Genderless is speech that contains features that mark it as characteristically male or female.
It is not limited to peach, genderless can also be extended to include features of nonverbal communication as well.
The notion of genderless strengthens discourses that emphasize differences between men and women and which cover up the huge area of similarity in female and male language behavior. In the following, I will look into the history, application, and critique of this theory to better explain communication between men and women. Summary Historically, genderless appeared in the sass’s when Cherries Kramer when she published in the Quarterly Journal of Speech.
This article considers evidence for the existence of sex-linked systems of language use.
The concept of ‘genderless’ discusses men and women language variations, occurred first in gender-oriented sociolinguistic literature styles of the ass’s. These works focus on style. Utilizing either male or female styles, they paved the way for this theory growth. The influence of gender upon communication has intrigued many over the past two decades. Genderless Theory Final By tanners Genderless theory has led scholars to do research for systematic linguistic correlates of women’s and men’s language use.
This is mainly phonology, syntax, morphology, semantics, and supplemental phonemes features that are related to the sound of peach such as pitch, stress patterns, and intonation. Specifically, sociolinguists are vastly interested in genderless. They study ‘elects’, a term that refers to the social or regional varieties of speech. Within this study the conceptual connection is clear between the central term dialect and the related term genderless. “Linguists are not the only scholars who are interested in Genderless.
Other communication scholars such as Cherish Kramer have found additional lexical and semantic features of feminine language, particularly the stereotype of feminine language. ” (10) Concepts To innumerate, when talking about this theory it becomes necessary to break up the concepts and discuss them equally and fully. Style takes on dimensions of language used more in the realm of pragmatics such as interruption behaviors, top control, talk time, and turn taking. Genderless describes style as the postmodernist premise that identities are created in discourse itself and do not exist pre-discursively.
Some may argue that within the notion of style that one will place less emphasis on a variety as object-in-itself and more emphasis on the processes of distinction, which operate on many levels, from the gross to the subtle. The term style then can be understood in a variety of ways. In a traditional variation sense as to sociolinguistics, style was seen, very narrowly, as attention paid to speech. In this paradigm, non-standard features (mostly phonological) were quantified for contexts of different degrees of formality.
When it comes to correlated studies with the demographic characteristics of the speakers (such as class, sex, race, and age. ) Ethnographic approaches use a more context-sensitive notion of style that recognizes not Just formality as the sole dimension, but also others such as intention topic, genre, or audience. Style and context are mutually dependent on the one hand, a certain context may make a certain style more likely; on the other hand, and style is a means of creating a context.
Stylistic language use as a consequence is an essential part of social stabilization and performing identities” (262). Generational features can be described as being a part of the linguistic behavioral process. This can be in context of speakers having corresponding symbolization interactions or where the practices belong to the radicalized practice of a community. The aim with this view is to not treat genderless tiles as a form of social variation but to study the role of Generational stabilization and how it plays in the discursive formation of gendered identities.
Genderless are accordingly not indexes or symptoms of pre-existing gender identities. Hypothesis Furthermore, the genderless theory proposes that there are separate languages based on gender. The genderless hypothesis, also referred to as the sex-dialect hypothesis, suggests that Judgments about the shortfalls of women’s language are triggered by the linguistic features typical of women’s language-in-use (Encyclopedia of Communication Theory, 2009). This particular theory discusses genderless as being a stable, context-independent female or male variety.
Even if differences between women and men can be retrieved from language data, they can only be Judged with respect to the specific context or the role they play in a specific community of practice. Deborah Tangent, a pioneer for the genderless styles theory, introduced a sociolinguistic study on how miscommunication occurs all the time between men and women. Women tend to seek human connection, whereas men seem to seek out conversation about status, competition or personal accomplishments.
The core of the underlet theory explains how different sets of linguistic features used by both males and females develop through the gender acculturation process and how these gender linked message and language features function as identity markers for women or men in their social contexts Explanation Moreover, this theory discusses the fact that women and men often fail to understand each other because they speak in different language codes and listen with different priorities.
Stereotypically, men are taught and described to engage in competitive talk whereas women are described to engage in cooperative talk to establish social networks. It has also been determined that female characters engaged in apologies and self-deprecation; women are most likely to blame themselves whereas men are more likely to place blame elsewhere. Women, according to the Genderless Styles Theory, are characterized as weak, tentative, hesitant, and trivial. Women are likely to hold conversations that have low powerless, higher voices, and less command for authority.
For example, even women who hold powerful or high status positions do not engage in saying different statements because they tend to feel lower in status position than the rest. In terms of female genderless, women usually embody a personal, intimate, and cooperative style when it comes to communication. The stories that they share about themselves reveal a great deal about their hopes, needs and values. When it comes to listening, women hold eye contact, offer head nods, or small responses to show that they are actively listening.
Additionally, women tend to ask questions to establish a connection or tag a question to the end of the sentence to get a response to keep the conversation going. Contrarily to women, men interrupt others to take control of the conversation or to switch the conversation. Male genderless usually also embody an impersonal, distanced, generalist style when it comes to communication. Men often can be described for striving for one up positioning and avoiding self-disclosure and small talk conversations. Men typically avoid asking for help.
Questions are a 5 form of verbal sparring because public face is far more important to men than to women. Obviously, when it comes to men and women there are clearly different communication styles therefore reinforcing the genderless theory. Conclusion Overall, this theory discusses many important concepts and ideals that deal with he communication similarities and differences between different gendered individuals. Genderless is a concept that has proved to intrigue sociologists, scholars, and communication stylists through-out the years. It can be said that male and female speech styles are two different and opposite gendered varieties.
The influence of gender upon communication has lead scholars to do research spanning from systematic linguistic correlates of men and women’s language use to simple variations in syntax. Genderless Styles Theory introduces many concepts that has shaped the way that we look at gender differences within communication. This theory proposes and attempts to highlight the different languages that are formed based on gender, I. E. The genderless hypothesis. Conclusively, this theory obviously encompasses many concepts, terms and ideals that shape the way that men and women communicate effectively.
Applications Overview Within this section one will find the application of Genderless Styles Theory. There are three sections of examples that feature the use of Genderless. In current media, especially in recent years, gender in politics has become a very interesting and controversial topic. Specifically one might see genderless styles theory come into play during the 2008 presidential election involving Republican Vice President Candidate Sarah Plain. Secondly you can also witness Genderless at work in entertainment as well.
This specifically can be seen within the television series, How I Met Your Mother. This theory is greatly portrayed in the coaching styles of two of the main characters, Marshall and Lily. Lastly, I have witnessed genderless differences within my own life and specifically within my romantic relationship. The following is an in depth analysis f how Genderless Styles Theory can be applied to current media, entertainment, and my own life. Current Events To Innumerate, in current media there always seems to be a debate as to whether women should be voted into public political positions.
Many people are against the idea because of the communicative styles that men and women differ on. It is agreed that men and women have different styles of communication and women are said to be too “soft” and not aggressive enough in communication, whereas men are said to be aggressive and competitive and are more likely to win a political race for that season. For instance, Sarah Plain, as the Republican Party nominee for Vice President in the 2008 presidential election alongside Arizona Senator John McCain, was first Republican woman nominated for the vice presidency.
This caused much debate in the media. The press had great potential to influence perceptions of Sarah Plain during the 2008 campaign, given her relative obscurity when picked to be the Republican vice-presidential nominee. Prior literature on press treatment of women running for national office suggests that Plain was likely to receive coverage that disadvantaged her due to her gender. Additionally, there were questions about whether or not she was fit to be a vice president because she was a woman.
Paling’s gender, appearance, and family status were disproportionately mentioned in her coverage, and such mentions tended to dampen public opinion about her (International Journal of Press/Politics, 2013) In addition, the tone of Paling’s coverage was markedly negative, increasingly so over time, and was significantly related to reader opinion about her. While Plain was a unique candidate for national-level office, these findings should give pause to those concerned with equitable press retirement of women on the campaign trail.
They did not win the political race however, now in times of American struggle in politics, people are beginning to say that it is time for change. What better way to change than to try something that is rarely done. Times are changing and women are becoming more influential in politics. Entertainment Similarly, in television, gender is displayed in exaggerated forms. “Media in terms of genderless often illustrate very well how gender can be done linguistically without any speaking subject behind discourse.
The gendered identities performed in advertising or in TV films are pure constructions of identity. ” (271) For instance, in the season 4, episode 19 of How I Met Your Mother, Lily has let Marshall coach her kindergarten’s basketball team. Lily saw it as an opportunity for Marshall to act like a dad and teach little kids on playing game with “rules” and being “fair. ” However, when Lily came to give Marshall a surprise visit, he saw how “aggressive” and “mean” he was to the kids by punishing them to do 100 pushup.
The way of coaching was different than Lily because she puts the idea of how having “fun” and being “happy’ counts in playing a basketball game. This episode may show a different attempt on how a male and female would coach a basketball team. This display of different genderless is especially important to this example. It illustrates one of Tanner’s most predominant points about her theory. Men and women communicate differently. Men are more likely to engage in competitive speak and in this case, are more likely to persuade the children to be aggressive in their playing styles.
Women however are more likely to influence the children to have fun and make memories while playing the game. Each styles of influence within this example are considered important. Personal Experience Moreover, in my life I personally have witnessed “Genderless” at work. Specifically, within my relationship I can see several differences in the communicative styles between my fiance© and l. Often times we have differences in the way we communicate. For instance, I am a strong communicator. I like to have an open channel of communication at all times.
I like to know what my fiance© is thinking and why he is thinking it. I feel this way because it is very hard to read his emotions and he rarely communicates how he is feeling. He is not all for this type of communication. He isn’t used to expressing his emotions or feelings and has a hard time doing so. This often leads to arguments because I get the feeling that he is being untruthful when in reality he is Just being himself. More times than not I read way too into his expressions and think there is something wrong when there is nothing wrong. Genderless is actually the expression of powerless interpreted according to culturally based gender expectations. ” (8) We also embody this ideal within Genderless. We like to play pool together and competitively at a pool league. I enjoy playing pool for the fun of the game. My fiance© however, loves playing pool for he win. When he is playing at a competition he often engages in “smack” talk where he tries to talk himself up and boast about his pool playing skills. I differ I this because when I am playing pool I often congratulate my competitor on their own shots.
I am supportive of their game and that is completely different than my fiance© and his game playing, communicative skills. Conclusion Irrefutably, the genderless styles theory can be applied to many aspects of everyday life. When it comes to observing this theory at work, one can find examples in current media, entertainment media, and one’s own personal life. Explicitly, within current media, one can see genderless styles theory at work when it comes to the political career of Sarah Plain. As previously stated, Plain faced many adverse situations while running for vice president simply because of her gender.
Additionally, within entertainment media one can observe Generational differences within the show “How I Met Your Mother”. This application example of the Genderless Styles Theory demonstrates an extreme difference in communication styles between men and women. Lastly, even within my own personal life one can witness genderless styles theory. Specifically when it comes to playing pool, genderless really begins to become very apparent. Critique Interpretive Overview The Genderless Styles Theory can be analyzed in a variety of ways.
Some believe that this theory appeals and applies in certain experiences that fit and exclude the rest. Holistically, it encompasses many strengths and weaknesses for both an interpretive theory as well as an objective theory, however, I feel that this theory lies more towards the interpretive camp. When it comes to this theory leading to a deeper understanding of people, this theory reveals how men and women subconsciously monomaniac in different ways. It shows Just how easy it is for all of us to misjudge the words and actions of others. This theory also encompasses clarification of values.
It promotes mutual respect and understanding by showing that communicators should respect and value communication of both genders rather than Just their own gender. As far as aesthetic appeal goes this theory is also very prominent. Genderless theory has universal appeal in my opinion because each individual, regardless of gender, can identify with the frustrations and misunderstandings of communication across genders. Also supporting the interpretive view on this theory is the community of agreement about this theory. Due to its practicality and usefulness, this theory has been widely accepted.
Though the theory is widely accepted, most communication scholars look at this theory as a stepping stone for further research on the matter. Lastly one must look at this theory ability to promote change and reform society. This is an area within communication that could always use improving. Competent communicators who understand and appreciate both sides of gender communication can become more effective and more appropriate as we adapt to the contrasting tiles of the other gender. Overall this theory, in my opinion leans more towards and interpretive camp.
Strengths Additionally, when looking at this theory and its concepts one can see several strengths. Primarily, this theory best feature is its ability to be applied to most everyone. Within one’s life, it is probable that one might have an issue of miscommunication due to gender differences. Simply, this theory is very relatable to each individual. Furthermore, this theory describes differences and effectively proposes different techniques to assist in the elimination of communication mishaps due to gender. It levels the communication playing field between men and women.
This theory also is easily understood. It isn’t an overly complex concept and can be easily described and explained with little struggle. Weaknesses Though this theory is considered a very strong and useful theory, there are several weaknesses as well. To see gender as a sole and independent factor for language variation is one of the most problematic issues with this concept. Gender usually interacts with other parameters as well such as class, race, age or even the context of communication. In certain exotic cultures where sexes at first glance seem to use ender-specific forms of communications (99).
This can be described as a bias within the communication field due to the fact that it is most of the time Women’s languages’ that are described, this then creates a strong impression that male varieties are the norm. This shows in certain ways that based on culture communication styles also vary. The concept of Genderless corresponds to the paradigm within feminist linguistics which has been criticized for several reasons. The notion of gendered subcultures in which girls and boys learn gender-typical speech behavior is not applicable to most Western societies.
Sexes in these societies can communicate freely with each other and is used to explain gendered language variation as being parallel to miscommunication in inter-ethnic encounters is to misrepresent the fact that gendered variation fundamentally differs from other kinds of variation. Genderless can be utilized in the knowledge that it plays a major role in the permittivity construction of gender and does not mean that it includes all men or all women that uses their own respective category (Encyclopedia of Communication Theory, 2009). Basically this explains that some men and some women switch roles and thus switch genderless.
Inter-Gender similarity and intra- gender diversity are usually not addressed in most studies regarding communication. It seems doubtful that all boys and all girls in the classroom studies behaved in the same way or that all female and male letter studies were equally fond of using ‘appropriate’ genderless. This seems rather suspicious in the realm of studying genderless styles however it does seem to be fruitful when talking about giving girls and boys and women and men standards to live up to. Conclusion In my opinion, this theory was a very enjoyable and informative theory to research.
It helped to broaden my knowledge on communication differences between men and women. I feel that I can more effectively communicate not only with men but with women now as well. This theory overall was very educational and easy to grasp. It had a simple concept that was widely and heavily researched which allowed me to easily gain more understanding about communication differences. I felt that there were several strengths with this theory and I thought it was executed well. Though I feel this theory was informative and strong, I also feel that there were some gaps that needed to be filled.
Living in a day and age where there are many gender fluidness (meaning that the line between masculinity and femininity has become rather blurry), I feel there should be further research that allows one to discover communication styles of those whom may be transgender. This would allow for a totally encompassing theory to be applied to each and every individual and would subsequently limit the amount of miscommunication. Conclusively, I feel that this theory was incredibly enjoyable,
Cite this Genderlect Theory Final
Genderlect Theory Final. (2017, Jul 22). Retrieved from https://graduateway.com/genderlect-theory-final-5295/