Language and the Sexes

By Francine Frank & Frank Anshen

Subjects: Language
Paperback : 9780873958820, 130 pages, June 1983
Hardcover : 9780873958813, 130 pages, June 1983

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Table of contents


1. Naming Names
2. Talking Like a Lady: How Women Talk
3. Hey Lady: Whose Honey Are You Anyway?
4. Of Girls and Chicks
5. What Is to Be Done

Suggested Research Projects
Guidelines for Non-Discriminatory Language Usage
A Selected List of Guidelines For Non-Sexist Usage


In a highly readable and lively text, the authors explore the way language mirrors our cultural assumptions, especially those concerned with gender distinctions. Focusing on contemporary issues, they draw on their knowledge of sociolinguistics and other languages to illustrate how sexism may be hidden by habits of language. In making the reader aware of these, they suggest options for change.

Language and the Sexes synthesizes a wide range of up-to-date information and research under several topics: naming, stereotypes of language behavior, the politics of conversation, forms of address, asymmetry in vocabulary, and possibilities of reform. The book concludes with suggested projects related to these topics, guidelines for non-discriminatory language use, and an extensive bibliography.

Director of the Linguistics Program at SUNY Albany, Francine Frank also teaches in the Women's Studies Program. She has published widely on sexism and language. Frank Anshen teaches linguistics at SUNY, Stony Brook. He is author of Statistics and Language and founder of the New York State Council on Linguistics.