Linguistic Sexism


The feminist movement has achieved a lot in promoting women’s rights. However, the struggle continues as he still enjoys an abundance of rights that she doesn’t. One of the issues is language where the word ‘man’ is used to describe individuals who could belong to either sex. Anyone with feminist values would be uncomfortable with the generic use of words such as spokesman, congressman, or policeman to describe individuals who could be of either gender. Those using these terms however could be excused as the word man is a simple single syllable three letter word and is much easier on the tongue than the two syllable six letter word “person”. No wonder people still use the easier terms despite strong efforts against using them. This is not sexist. What is sexist is the language itself which made the word ‘man’ so much easier than the word ‘woman’ and pushed every one to use it in excess to brand anyone who belongs to mankind, or shall we say human kind? To solve this issue of linguistic sexism, the best way would be to redefine the word ‘man’ to only mean person, and describe the male person with a word that has the same number of letters and syllables as woman. I would recommend for this purpose the use of the word ‘heman’ to refer to people possessing testicular genitalia.

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