Cross-Cultural Communication: International Communication

Proceedings of the
Mirny Regional Scientific-Practical Conference on Inter-Cultural Communication:
Issues of Politics, History, Language and Literature

Mirny Polytechnic Institute and Sakha (Yakutsk) State University
Mirny, Sakha Republic (Yakutia)
27-28 April 2002

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Communication from the Point of View of Gender

by Sardana Innokentyeva
3rd Year Student
Mirny Polytechnic Institute,
affiliated with the Sakha (Yakutsk) State University

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At the end of '60s and the beginning of '70s of the 20th century the concept of gender was introduced into the usage of several nations. This intensified gender researches in cultural and social spheres. However, we should emphasize that Russian and foreign researchers approached the new notion unequally. In some articles and also monographs, the authors observed gender as a synonym of the notion "sex". The Dictionary of the Russian Language by S.I. Ozhegov, for example, gives the following interpretation of the word "sex": "one of two kinds of living creatures (e.g., men and women ...)." As I. Kon notes: "To my mind, we shouldn't give gender the name of sex. It just increases the confusion of terminology" (Kon, 2000).

In the problems of the establishment and the development of the women's movement, and also feminine theory, the questions about the emancipation of women in the sphere of broadening of their civil and political rights are connected with the movement for sex equality, for the equality of women and men. But not with "gender" equality! For the term "gender" firstly appeared in works of English sociopsycologists for the designation of sex manifestation in the behavior of a person, going far beyond boundaries of two kinds. "Inventory" of these manifestations is quite various: it includes not only the masculinity or femininity characterizing an individual. We can consider gender as a "sex character" of a person (we can find this phrase in theories of Carl Gustav Jung".

As stated, people are referred to this or that subculture depending on sex, age, race and also gender. According to the classification suggested by sociopsycologist S. Bem, gender subculture can be manifested by individuals of four types (Bem, 1974):

Furthermore, an individual can combine equally brightly expressed male and female characteristics (androgenic type) and, finally, a person may be remarkable for the low level of male and female manifestations (undifferentiated type).

As a rule, feminine individuals possess better orientation towards the names of the color spectrum, if they use them in their work, while masculine personalities in the same fields use terms connected with various technical instruments. In a feminine subculture, people very often over-fill their speech with adjectives. Masculine individuals, in their subculture, can be influenced to use rude swear-words (Troitskaja 2000). Here, it is necessary to note that due to the complication of gender-communication relations, many representatives of our society consider men rather than women to be more adjusted to the use of swearwords, and also to unfriendliness, hostility and blasphemy. But, as the investigation of the American psycholinguist K. Staley has shown, men and women can demonstrate more similarity than difference in the use of swearwords, i.e. this is a question of gender identification and not of belonging to a particular sex (Staley 1978).

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Citation Guidelines

Innokentjeva, Sardana, "Communication from the Point of View of Gender", translated by I.A. Abolentseva, Cross-Cultural Communication: International Communication, Proceedings of the Mirny Regional Scientific-Practical Conference on Inter-Cultural Communication: Issues of Politics, History, Language and Literature (27-28 April 2002), Mirny Polytechnic Institute and Sakha (Yakutsk) State University, edited by S.A. Mousalimas, 2002, available at http://www.OxfordU.net/mirny_international-2002/students/innkentyeva.html.


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