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Discuss the Idea That Men and Women Use Language Differently [30]

In: English and Literature

Submitted By sara271
Words 1460
Pages 6
The questions brings to mind so many different answers because although males and females are different biologically, the statement ‘men and women use language differently’ proposes the idea that we are different in so many other ways. It is said that women are more verbal than men who prefer action over words. However, it is difficult to generalise because individual differences plays a role and factors such as age, context, class, background, occupation and education will affect the amount of talk a person delivers and how much dominance they will have in the conversation.

Table 1 shows how men and women cooperate in conversations with the use of turn taking, speaking time and interruptions. The average number of seconds all the women spoke for is 22.9 seconds and for men it is 60 seconds – clearly illustrating the idea that men like to speak more to get their opinions out in the world. Women are said to go along with this because they don’t want to hurt anyone’s feelings and so would want them to continue. Also, we can see that men tended to interrupt more. Man F interrupted 8.0 times and Woman B interrupted 0.0 times. This clearly shows the gender inequalities between men and women, men being the ones that don’t care about feelings and women being the over-sensitive type in terms of supporting everyone’s opinions. On the other hand, we can see from the table that men interrupted eachother more. This may be because they have more subject knowledge and want to prove that. However it has been said that subject knowledge has no impact and is not the reason why men interrupt, so why do they? It can be the simple fact that they want to be seen better than the rest, dominant and powerful in the way they talk. Zimmerman and West concluded that interruptions and delayed minimal responses are ways of controlling conversations, as they indicate interest and attention....

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