The Language Of Oppression By Robin Lakoff Essay

The Language Of Oppression By Robin Lakoff Essay

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Language always conveys a message. Language can convey a message that is full of manipulation. In Robin Lakoff’s essay, “Everybody’s a Politician”, she discusses how manipulation is used in day to day conversations, even if one is not intentionally trying to manipulate. Language can be used to dominate others. In the essay, “the Language of Oppression” by Haig A. Bosmajian, he explains the power of using names to define others. Language can change the way a person thinks. In the same essay, “the Language of Oppression” by Haig A. Bosmajian, he also discusses the way someone thinks can be changed by language. Lastly, language has the power to degrade an individual. In another essay, by Robin Lakoff, “You Are What You Say”, she explains how certain words can have alternate meanings, which may be degrading. Language conveys a message that can be used to dominate, degrade, manipulate, and alter the way one thinks.
Manipulation is a major part of language and is used during each conversation. Robin Lakoff, in her essay “Everybody’s a Politician”, actually proves this. She explains that when one addresses someone as “Doctor” or “Professor” that person gets a subliminal message that reads “I’m more important that you” or “I’m incredibly smarter than you”. This means they have an unequal relationship with the person they are addressing. They are a sort of elitist, where people in that group do not refer to one another as “Doctor James”, they simply say “James”, because they are a part of that group. Additionally, when “Mommy” or “Your Honor” tells someone to do something, that someone has to do it, since they have no other choice. The person giving demands is on a higher level than the person who is being ordered to do them. This is just...


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...h high self-esteem. So he basically tells her she is too incompetent to fix the machine, but makes himself appear nicer by calling her “honey”. On the surface, some words do not appear to be degrading, but when one digs a little deeper, one will find, that the words used are actually degrading.
Language always has a message to convey. The message could be chalk full of manipulation. The essay “Everybody’s a Politician”, proved that manipulation is in every conversation. The message could be based soley on the power to dominate. The essay “the Language of Oppression”, completely proves this point along with the next message. This message might be dealing with how language changes the way one thinks. Finally, the last message, may be trying to degrade someone. Language conveys a message that can be used to dominate, degrade, manipulate, and alter the way one thinks.

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