Get Inspired, Be Empowered Forums Sexism & Patriarchy Gender-Neutral Language, Why it is so important?

6 replies, 6 voices Last updated by Aditi Sahu 2 years, 4 months ago
  • Woospire
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    Yash Tiwari
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    @yash
    #33137
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    The practice of gender-neutral language aims to eliminate or neutralize the gender and other social biases adults would unconsciously transmit to children through their use of language. So parents, teachers, caregivers, nurses, doctors, or anyone who interacts with a child should be mindful of using language that doesn’t bias the child toward masculine or feminine stereotypes, as well as words that do not reflect existing social inequalities. Gender-neutral language does not necessarily mean gender-neutral thought. The language we use can influence how we think, but it can’t reliably change it. Instead, language is merely a tool: Gender-neutral language is a tool for achieving fairness and equality by making sure that everyone is included and no one is marginalized or excluded based on gender.

    The major reason for gender-neutral language is to ensure that your writing is inclusive of information and ideas from all sexes and all social genders, not just those of the male perspective. Gender-neutral language is important because it’s the polite, respectful, and thoughtful thing to do. It makes a statement about the society we want to live in and helps us achieve it. Gender-fair language is more than just a fad – it’s a valuable way of helping set the record straight. Bias in the language is bias embedded in thought. When words are used to only describe one sex or social gender, they assume that the other is normal and therefore doesn’t need to be described. The result is a subconscious bias that permeates people’s thoughts.

    Gender-fair and inclusive language are sensitive to and respectful of the differences between women and men. It is a guide for our communication with others, in our communities, and our schools. In this period when there is a growing awareness about the power of language to perpetuate stereotypes, two simple convictions have coalesced. They are that everyone has equal rights – no exceptions; and that the English language can be used to express ideas and attitudes that promote equality among women and men. Over the past decade or so, increased attention has been given to gender-fair and inclusive language by museums, cultural institutions, schools, and professional associations. It may seem like an odd thing to spend a lot of time thinking about. But it has some big and immediate practical implications for the way we all work, leading to discomfort for both women and men, and also some pretty serious consequences for gender equality. Everyone needs to care about this.

    A growing number of social movements such as the LGBT and feminist communities view gender-neutral language as a way to include persons who feel their gender does not align with this bimodal system. Such individuals have always existed; it’s just that more and more people are becoming aware of the diverse nature of the gender spectrum. You would be surprised to discover how many people today identify as non-binary! And the reason this is so is that we are finally putting an end to all the old, unhealthy ways of thinking.

    At the heart of many organizations is the desire to maximize diversity, which most people understand as open access to opportunities and resources. But for today’s workforce, this is not enough. Today’s work environment involves understanding differences, celebrating them, and integrating them into the fabric of everyday life. `Gender-neutral language’ is important because using it helps you appeal to everyone, and being inclusive encourages the best employees to apply, fosters respect among colleagues of all genders, and demonstrates that you value diversity.

    Manpreet Singh
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    @manpreet
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    Listen to the use of sex-neutral terminology if you want to understand the prism through which a person views gender. It does not disclose a lot of implicit sexual prejudice. We all strive to reduce since unconscious prejudice is something. The European Parliament’s guiding principles on the use of a gender-neutral language state: Gender-Neutral is a generic word for the use of non-sexist, inclusive, or equitable language. The aim of sex-neutral language is to prevent word choices from being regarded as prejudicial, discriminatory or degrading, by implying that one sex or social gender is the norm. It also helps reducing gender stereotypes, encourages societal transformation, and helps achieve gender equality by using gender-fair and inclusive language. This is also an excellent definition that explains why all of us have to take care of this.

    It’s now becoming increasingly known globally that sex isn’t only binary; there are more than two genders, more than merely male and female. There are also non-binary people, fluid gender people, and people who identify as bisexual or agent. In the same way, people from across sex make the public conscious that even sex is not binary, that certain people have bodies that are not purely women or men. The 19 USA and the District of Columbia are demonstrating this growing awareness and now offer their residential gender markers an option for “X” on their driving licenses together with their expected M and F. There are many countries worldwide that give its people, on their passports, a third-gender option. Just as in the 1980s, the gender-neutral vocabulary began to be used to promote equity for women, so also for the promotion of equality for varied sexes. Information and gender-neutral language awareness do not lead to change immediately. The extent to which people use gender-neutral language relies on a variety of cultural, religious, and political issues, among others.

    PALAK KASHIV
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    @palak
    #33220
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    Gender-neutral language means a language that is the non-sexist language the main purpose of this language is to avoid gender bias non-targeting one sex or gender is superior. How we speak and what language interprets a lot about ourselves so when we start using gender-neutral language it will show equality of gender in what we speak and people get an indication that they are not biased towards “gender. Many schools are adopting this gender-neutral language even banks, hospitals staff needs to begin doing this maybe it will be awkward in starting but after few days it will be a habit. We need this language we are always creating differences between males and females which not even require some time and what about the LGBTQ community we can’t always count them as others because they also want to have an identity in society when we go to any ceremony, we have seen people welcome by saying “ladies and gentlemen instead of that we can say everyone “here we are including every gender. We can use them rather than using he or she, it is very important. Because what language we speak shows how we think or what our thoughts are, these small changes will make a bigger impact in the future we want to create a world where each gender is respected and have value. In gender-neutral language, MX is used instead of ms, Mrs or miss because some people do not want to get identified gender if a person is confused about what gender can be used so we can write MX. So please try to adopt the gender-neutral language.

    DISHA SAPKALE
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    @42disha
    #33227
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    Gender neutral language is important to emphasizes equal treatment between both men and women. At old times, people recognized neutral language like word “man” but they don’t feel gender neutral language towards women. In today’s generation the naming of words has changed like chairmen becomes chairperson, mankind becomes humanity, policeman becomes police officer. Gender neutral language helps to reduce gender inequality, gender stereotypes, gender discrimination towards women. Some examples of gender indication in occupational heading such as businessman or businesswoman instead it should be called as businessperson, salesman or saleswoman should be called as sales person, barman or barwoman should be called as bartender these were the some gender neutral titles. At workplace, women are the one who faces with gender inequality, if people will practice the gender neutral language at workplace it will help women with gender equality. In class teachers says girls and boys rather they should used students or kids. In our society married couple is called as husband and wife instead they can say spouse or partner. People mostly used he or she instead of that they should use them. In gathering, if we ask someone do you have brother or sister rather than we should say siblings. These little steps will help to have gender neutral language in our society. People should stop using gendered terms, if they don’t know about the person’s gender. Gender neutral language matters and it is very important in today’s world to make the change towards women inequality. It will also help to influence the thinking of society towards women. There are people who does gender discrimination and gender stereotypes due to which gender neutral language couldn’t takes place because of the society mindset and inequality towards women. Society should see to that both men and women should be treated equally with equal respect.

    Semantee Chattopadhyay
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    @semantee03
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    Language is a beautiful thing and from the wisdom of cognitive scientists, language shapes us early, broadly and guides reasoning. So when it comes to speaking about people and their identities specifically we should make sure we are being respectful and empathetic. Though language can shape how we think we can also shape language because it is a living, breathing thing. The words we use every day have a tremendous amount of power whether we are describing other people or events or ideas or the things around us. When people are telling us to say something different, it’s not because they think they know better they just trying to help make our words more accurate and meaningful. For different communities being specific and accurate is about respect that is owed to them. Using words that are historically loaded with violence, injustice and prosecution feel like an act of violence in itself. Freedom of expression does not mean freedom from consequences or judgement.
    Many of us are familiar with the idea of saying “firefighter” instead of “fireman” or mail carrier instead of “mailman”. The great thing about using this sort of language is that it includes men and women and includes non-binary people. Being non-binary means that they don’t fit completely into the category of men or women. For some non-binary people that may mean that they feel like a combination of the two. Other non-binary people may feel like a third gender altogether. Some non-binary people are also genderfluid and feel more like one gender and some days and another gender on other days. Much of our everyday language reinforces the false concept of a gender binary. When we create an audience by saying “ladies and gentlemen”, believe out people who aren’t ladies or gentlemen. Instead of saying “ladies and gentlemen”, we could say “honoured guest” or just “welcome, everyone!”. Instead of asking someone if they have brothers and sisters we can ask them if they have siblings. When writing about a single person we can use gender-neutral pronouns like “they” instead of saying “he or she”.

    Aditi Sahu
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    @aditi
    #34329
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    Language is a very important tool that can influence many. It plays a huge role in shaping our mindset and impacting our beliefs. Not only is language influential in nature, it also shows the true picture of society. So when it comes to our society, it will be of no surprise to know that our language is not gender-neutral.

    The language, be it English or Hindi(as these are the only languages I’m fluent in), are male-default in nature. You will come across many instances where the word “men” is used to refer to human beings in general, or the “mankind” to refer to humankind. While this might seem like a small thing to many people, but it influences the way we think. Whenever we read the word “man”, even when it refers to a human being in general,our brain assumes it to be a male human being by default, unless specified otherwise. And that is exactly why we need gender-neutral language!

    Gender-neutral language will not only help us be more inclusive of people of all genders, it also shows respect to every human being. It shows the advancement of the society, advancement of the mindset of the human beings! And isn’t that what we are working towards?

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