Using Gender-Fair orNeutral Language Presented by: Ozell Sanders ENG 393 Sec 401
WHAT IS THE PROBLEM HERE? English language usage standards used to tell us to use "man," "he," etc., when speaking about any unspecified individual. This standard has changed for several reasons: • it inaccurately represents individuals who are female or groups who are partly or wholly female; • it misleadingly focuses on the sex of the individual rather than what they are doing; • Infers a sense of bias (even when you have no intention of doing so).
Problem 1: The pseudo-generic he, his, and him Ex: If a student studies hard, he will succeed. • If a student studies hard, he or she will succeed • Students who study hard will succeed. • If a student studies hard, they will succeed.
Implementing Gender Fair Language • Application of the following techniques • Avoiding sentences using conditional structures such as “if” or “when” • Include more use of first, second, or third person pronouns when applicable • Create balance in the sentence by “double pronouns” or clarification of gender role in sentence