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Language, Cognition and Gender

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Book Series: Frontiers Research Topics ISSN: 16648714 ISBN: 9782889198924 Year: Pages: 188 DOI: 10.3389/978-2-88919-892-4 Language: English
Publisher: Frontiers Media SA
Subject: Science (General) --- Psychology
Added to DOAB on : 2016-01-19 14:05:46
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Abstract

Gender inequality remains an issue of high relevance, and controversy, in society. Previous research shows that language contributes to gender inequality in various ways: Gender-related information is transmitted through formal and semantic features of language, such as the grammatical category of gender, through gender-related connotations of role names (e.g., manager, secretary), and through customs of denoting social groups with derogatory vs. neutral names. Both as a formal system and as a means of communication, language passively reflects culture-specific social conditions. In active use it can also be used to express and, potentially, perpetuate those conditions. The questions addressed in the contributions to this Frontiers Special Topic include: • how languages shape the cognitive representations of gender• how features of languages correspond with gender equality in different societies• how language contributes to social behaviour towards the sexes• how gender equality can be promoted through strategies for gender-fair language use These questions are explored both developmentally (across the life span from childhood to old age) and in adults. The contributions present work conducted across a wide range of languages, including some studies that make cross-linguistic comparisons. Among the contributors are both cognitive and social psychologists and linguists, all with an excellent research standing. The studies employ a wide range of empirical methods: from surveys to electro-physiology. The papers in the Special Topic present a wide range of complimentary studies, which will make a substantial contribution to understanding in this important area.

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