Interrelationship Between Language And Anthropology

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Language and Anthropology
The interrelationship between language and gender is not only complex, but also diverse. Feminists have been anxious as the term gender entails treating males and females as if they had the same political power, rights, upbringing, access to education and many others. Questions and criticisms of language have emerged due to the concern that language is a powerful medium, which both reflects and constructs the world. Language presents stereotypes of both males and females, sometimes to the disadvantage of males, but more often to the disadvantage of the females. Language has been historically man-made with the male forms reflecting the male’s position in the society and the female forms perceived as deviant. Various lexical markings have also prevented women from expressing and raising consciousness about their own experience as legitimately human by preventing women from speaking with their own voice.
One of the most common examples of gender bias in language is the use of pronouns, such as ‘he’ or ‘him’ to something related to both men and women. Another great example is that of master vs. mistress. There are unusual connotations surrounding the two terms and detriment to the female. While master has a strong and powerful connotation, mistress does not. Language limits the understanding of human experience by seeing the world through a gendered lens. According to feminist linguists, the attention given to language denaturalizes the assumed male

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