Gender Stereotyping Of The English Language, And Louis Gould 's X : A Fabulous Child 's Story

Gender Stereotyping Of The English Language, And Louis Gould 's X : A Fabulous Child 's Story

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The stereotyping of gender in modern society has become so deeply engrained in our culture that it often goes unnoticed. Laurel Richardson’s “Gender Stereotyping in the English Language” and Louis Gould’s “X: A Fabulous Child’s Story” are two readings which highlight the importance we tend to place on gender norms in addition to the consequences gender typecasting may have on people in regards to their identity. Throughout their articles, Gould and Richardson both explain the ways in which a gender-based vocabulary demonstrates and encourages internalized societal beliefs about the roles of men and women.
In “Gender Stereotyping in the English Language”, Richardson explains just how deeply embedded gender distinctions have become in our culture and the harm they are permitted to bring to the different sexes as a whole. At the beginning of her article Richardson explains that “everyone in our society; regardless of class, ethnicity, sex, age, or race, is exposed to the same language, the language of the dominant culture.” (Richardson, 1981) Specifically, she highlights the dominance men have over women in society. Richardson clearly declares that women do not have a fully autonomous existence but rather exist as a part of man. (Richardson, 1981) This idea perpetuates sexism and the existence of the patriarchy, in addition to forcing both men and women to mold themselves to fit into gender norms.
“The illusion of sex differences stems from the great importance of gender in shaping individual identities and interactions in real life.” (Chrisler, 1995) Gould’s short story “X: A Fabulous Child’s Story” exposes how people strive to connect gender with identity and personality. Gould seeks to demonstrate how a child may adapt to soci...


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...inst women is more than a mere pipe dream; she highlights real, important issues that a society might face rather than proposing an idealistic revolution. While the erasure of gender could potentially be beneficial in future years, we must first address problems embedded in patriarchy and sexism before considering the uprooting of gender norms.
Laurel Richardson and Louis Gould both wrote moving, inspirational pieces on gender stereotyping. Richardson composed a passionate, acrimonious article about the problems society faces through sexist vocabulary, while Gould devised a light, humorous story with hard-hitting morals that would later become a children’s book. Although different in nature and style, both readings are effective in showing the importance gender stereotyping has on modern society and the harm it may cause when it is used excessively, as it is today.

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