Week 12 (March 21–25): Gender, Sex, Language - Language and Culture
Week 12 (March 21–25): Gender, Sex, Language - Language and Culture ANT3620
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This 5 page Class Notes was uploaded by Ricardo Rauseo on Saturday March 26, 2016. The Class Notes belongs to ANT3620 at University of Florida taught by Sean King in Summer 2015. Since its upload, it has received 8 views. For similar materials see Language and Culture in anthropology, evolution, sphr at University of Florida.
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Date Created: 03/26/16
Monday, March 21, 2016 Recap History of the relationship between humans and information storage devices. Human nature: tend to classify and organize the world around us. Internet speech practices of trolling and online identity. Analysis of Discourse of Trolling – Merritt Trolling: a genre of internet practice; notes their links to “antisocial behavior” but instead sees them as “purposeful” and “complex” Trolling vs. flaming: she sees what is popularly constructed as “trolling” as something else “flaming” or setting metaphoric fires on message boards/comments sections Discourse Analysis used on the site reddit.com She asks: how can we label practice “disruptive” if we do not stablish what is being “disrupted”? Questioning the Normative “Troll” Critical of the normal way people see trolling what measures “annoyance” or “anger” and how can we measure why someone trolls at a particular time? Problems with intentionality: are trolls really seeking just to troll or is it failure of communication? Different personality types not syncing? Temporal scale: o Once a troll, always a troll? o Is there a line that is crossed to turn into a troll? Results Paralinguistics played large role in discourse! o Different than in spoken language o Yelling, sarcasm, etc. conveyed through these paralinguistics signs Noticed those who troll tend to construct a persona, or sometimes devil’s advocate role. o Social language: what she calls different languages and dialects based on culture Trolling is “a genre of communication that poses a challenge to identify” The threat of being trolled way even serve to socialize Internet users in certain communities into what is appropriate online communication Paralinguistics ALL CAPS, , I’m great. Trolls weren’t related to anti-social behavior but they are not doing it just to be mean but they were trying to construct something but they couldn’t find a way how to. It is an internet practice Gender, Language and Power Performative Roles – Gender vs. Sex All cultures have gendered predispositions Judith Butler: o Borrowed from Foucault’s idea of discourse and power o Holds that gender is performative: not something to have but something to do “Sex” considered biological: o Between 1 in 30k to 1 in 1k born “intersexed” o Current medical practices: is sex truly “natural”? Foucault & “discourse” Linguistic Anthropology & Gender Gender is learned o Socialized Gender is collaborative o Constructed through personal and social contexts Gender is practiced (Bordieu) and performed (Geertz) o Ochs: “indexed gender” Practice indexes genders Western Samoa vs. United States Gender is power Markedness From linguistics: o “unmarked”: dominant default from(s) o “marked” is the irregular from(s) o Gender: male = unmarked, female = marked Grammatical markedness: some grammars unconsciously divide world into a faulty opposition o Masculine generic pronouns (e.g. English & Spanish) Los hombres piensan Male/Female Man/Woman o Semantic domain of “gentleman’s skills/activities” Amalia Sa’ar’s study of Israeli linguistic practices: o Studied Hebrew and Arabic speaking women from different economic positions o Hebrew fashion designer & Palestinian elderly woman same language family o Both languages use masculine generic pronouns. Some thought it would professionally help, others didn’t notice it at all until pointed out! No simple direct relationality between grammatical and cultural genders. Early Gender Studies Studies assumed categorical differences Language myths that still persist: o Competitive vs. cooperative o Silent vs. talkative These differences were never proven: considered true from the start! Late Gender Studies Janet Hyde: Gender Similarities Hypothesis o Early gender studies perpetuate dangerous myths [“talkativeness”] o Meta-analysis indicated negligible, or NO, difference in terms of behaviors o Problems with the meta-analysis’ data o Later meta-analysis: boys talked more Gender studies focused more on how identities emerged through time: o Embodiment theory: mind/body is a faulty opposition o Experience captured through body, not generated form mind o Mind does not trump body: they are co-present in any experiential phenomena. Either vice versa, it is all co-embedded. Wednesday, March 23, 2016 Recap Gender is: Performed Cultural Relational Collaborative/Competitive Power Marked/Unmarked depends on which flavor! Embodiment Theory Philosophy in social and behavioral sciences emphasizing the body in the production of human thought Lakoff and Johnson: o We define our world metaphorically to our bodies o E.g. work/love/life often defined as a journey of sorts Sexuality bound up not just as our own subjective thoughts (mind) but also our habitus (cultural practices). o Cultural plays both subtle and active roles in constructing our theories of person and body Recursive phenomena: o Information comes in through perceptual systems (senses) mind interprets according to theory of person/habitus/cultureactionreactionmore perceptual information so on. “Talkativeness” Matthias Mehl et al.: studied over 400 college students and words spoken. o F= 16,215 words/day o M=15, 669 words/day Large individual differences around the average due to individuals’ habitus and daily practice “Competition vs. Cooperation” Marjorie Goodwin: studied African American and racially mixed children’s speech behaviors across U.S. o Focus was on girls and their interactions in school Certain activities had cooperative language involved “He-Said-She-Said” moments: highly competitive linguistic techniques same as boys more to do with societal structures than linguistic structures Eckert — “Cooperative Competition” Notes a theory of person in US culture: o Men’s power based on public economic accumulation o Women’s power based on domestic capabilities that are inherently indexical to men’s power Because of this indexicality, women’s repertoires are more status- bound, NOT status-conscious Eckert — Symbolic Capital From Bourdieu: capital in the form of social prestige (not purely economic). o Goodwin: men/women symbolic capital o Women must justify status through relationships, not professional performance “Girl talk” is a linguistic force for women to increase competitive edge Eckert — Dialogic Interactions Being “popular” a defining system of thought concerning language in high schools. What occurred: o Interview/discussion among 6 African American girls entering senior year of HS o Competitive attitudes over self-presentation (popularity) vs. likability o Defining what is even “popular” o A small competition arose between two groups: “popular” and “non-mainstream” Eckert — Results At the end of the conversation, several issues of status and gender were settled between the different girls: o Girls reached consensus on importance of independence o “Shaky” consensus: religion Whether there was consensus or not, girls’ discussion an indexical speech event to larger societal structures. o However: provided a means of discussing and forming own opinions outside normative bounds.
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