Genderlect Theory

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A fundamental part of our being is our inner sense of self-identification. However, our upbringing within a certain society influences how we perceive our gender roles, appearance and behavior, therefore, producing genderlects. When interacting with others, individuals accommodate their speech towards the style or genderlect of the other participants, e.g. single-gender groups. Additionally, important aspects, such as politeness and appropriateness, are relevant factors to acquire acceptance and are visible in boys´ and girls´ genderlects. It may even affect their choice of aggression, indirect or direct. Although, girls exhibit more indirect aggression than boys do, because of socially constructed behavioral expectations. With this in mind,…show more content…
In 1990, Tannen described the difference in men and women´s style of communication and named it Genderlect Theory. The main purpose of the theory was to recognize the linguistic and cultural differences between genders. Furthermore, it categorizes the genders language into two different types of dialects (genderlects); the power, instrumented, assertive speech men use and the women´s politer, relational, empathetic speech variation. Children, on the other hand, have an innate ability to adapt to their gendering society and acquire gender-specific speech registers. Like adults, they too position themselves within their social group with their…show more content…
Western cultural society dissuades women and girls from exhibiting direct aggression in communications. Early on, they learn the characteristics of adult society that encourages indirect aggression (Lagerspetz, Bjökqvist & Peltonen, 1988, p. 404). With this in mind, in order to become popular, girls follow approved societal attributes to avoid banishment and confrontation by toning down their behavior and becoming more refined. However, indirect aggression can be a hidden form of self-promotion by spreading unpleasant gossip. Although intermediate adolescent girls are friendship oriented, they can display manipulating indirect social aggression to harm friends or even punish if the group feels threatened or abandoned. This kind of aggression is prominent in the adult society and acquired early by girls in intermediate
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