The Language And The Gender
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This study deals with the relationship between gender and language in this study we try to answer the flowing question: to what extend the differences in using prestige between male and female in Arabic language in terms of greetings, happiness, and sadness occasions? Due to this question the aim of the study is to find the reasons of differences between the two genders in Arabic language. this study find that the differences connected with female who try to add new words to their language which they connected these new words to the civilization and modern life and they try to use it out of their traditional way , in order to attract the attentions from others The samples of this study are males and females Arabic speakers. They are 10 persons, 5 males and 5 females native speakers of Arabic language. The questionnaire instrument is used in this study in order to take valued information. The questionnaire encompasses the terms of greetings, happiness and sadness occasions. It also includes other information such as gender, and age.
Key words: male, female, prestige, sociolinguistic.
Language and gender research began in early 20th century. Language & gender research concerned with male and female differences in their way of speaking. The study of language and gender related to sociolinguistics, this field mainly interests to study language in social context , in social context we can recognize that the speakers within same language used different ways of speech these ways different in term of gender, age, ethnic and social class; this is what we may call it social variation. The concept of prestige in sociolinguistics is related to standard language so according prestigious, dialect is likely to be considered the standard language. Many researcher deals with sociolinguistics studies and concern in language and gender Coates (1993) he recognized that female in speech community try to use a high degree of prestige than male. (Lakoff, 1975), the men use words like (damn, more than women (oh dear, goodness). Malkawi (2011) found that the females’ in order to attract the attention they avoid using old words. Scherer (1979), states that the women consciously employ the use of more socially prestigious speech than men, while men tend to use more forceful speech than women. Women tend to use prestige in her language more than men do. Women use standard prestige norms while men used vernacular prestige norms. In general non – standard language is low-prestige while standard connected to high- prestige but it is undesirable in many contexts.
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This study focused on sociolinguistic work through concentrate on the vernacular Arabic language when highlighted to find the differences between males and females in terms of greetings, happiness, and sadness occasions. This study dealt with linguistic variation in term of gender to find out the kind of prestige used by Arabic males and females in terms of greetings, happiness and sadness occasions. In this study we try to find out the answer to research question: Are there any differences in the talk of Arabic males and females in terms of greetings, happiness, and sadness occasions? In order to answer this question, the questionnaire instrument is used in this study in order to get valued information. The questionnaire encompasses the terms of greetings, happiness and sadness occasions. It also includes other information such as gender, age and etc. The samples of this study are males and females Arabic speakers. They are 10 persons, 5 males and 5 females’ native speakers of Arabic language.
Above all we can attributed the differences between male and female may belong to the desire of women to use Words which are related to prestige in order to attract attention and most women Believes that the use of prestigious words in speech are more civilized than use The ordinary one. In sociolinguistic the concept of prestige refers to positive or negative values choose by the speaker in other word the speakers choose consciously or subconsciously when they make the speech act.
Sociolinguistics is of the most important branches of modern linguistics .it deals with the study of language affected by social relations. Sociolinguistics includes pidgin, bilingualism and Creole languages .It refers to language variation, and language variation focuses on language different in contexts, where context refers to social class, age, gender, ethnicity, geography. In 1960 many researches in sociolinguistic focuses on the relationship between language and social structure and the relationship between language and gander.
Sociolinguistics interests on language in the social context and language in the social context focuses on the linguistics norms and variations. Speakers who differ from each other in age, social class, and ethnic group will differ from each other in their speech and this is called social variation.
Sociolinguistics is applied toward the different social situations and analysis the way that female and male speak to each other so , sociolinguistic we can say is a science that provide us with a brief description about the realities of human speech and how we can through a specific dialect describes the relation between language and age, sex and social function of a language .
Studies in the field of sociolinguistics generally assesses the reality by taking a sample of people and interview them, typically it studies the variation of language and based on dialect in specific society. Sociolinguistic concern with grammatical and phonological features so, Variation in language connected with gender, male and female tend to use different styles female tend to use a particular style in her speaking more than male do.
Gender with language
The area of study gender and language connected with sociolinguistics. It investigates the speech varieties associated with gender and sometimes this kind of studies is called a genderlect. Dr. Adelaide Haas of the State University of New York in 1979 she observed general differences between male and female linguistic style. She made several observations and according to the results she found women tend to use standard English and non directive language while men used non- standard and directive language .women prefer to talk about her family and home while most men prefer talked about business, money and sports it is also found gender language from generation to generation that is means the age will also different in using language from one age to another.
the differences between gender because the girls and boys socialized differently so according to this fact language different between gender, women always in her conversation try to make suggestion while men prefer to give commands, typically it is found that women used more emotion in her way of speaking than men do , also women focus on her feelings in her life while men focus on power in his life. Lakoff (1975) states that women try her possible to talk as a respected lady, comparing to men, women tend to use more hedges, intensifiers , a lot of polite forms and questions intonations.
Dialects are mainly related to the concept of prestige within a society. Usually, the standard dialect is associated with prestige in the society but that’s not mean all prestigious people must speak the standard but there are factors to prestige with non – standard dialects and by group may develop a prestige factors.
The prestige concepts:
Overt Prestige: refers to speakers of non-standard varieties who adopt the standard variety. The speakers are associate themselves with the general prestigious dialect within a society.
Covert Prestige: This refers to speakers who not adopt a standard dialect. The speakers in convert prestige are associated with what they gained from group in social identification.
So, overt prestige is assimilate standard, while convert prestige refers to assimilate non – standard. The concept of prestige in sociolinguistics is related to standard language so according prestigious, dialect is likely to be considered the standard language but in other hand non standard may also refers to prestige factors and the creative of prestige factors by non standard group.
In general prestige means a specific prestige dialect used by people in their way of speaking, it represent the language community , prestige dialects are associated with greater social, political, and economic power, sometimes people who speak prestige dialect are generally considered well-educated. but is that mean who does not speak a prestige dialect is uneducated according to preceding studies they found the people who didn’t speak prestige dialect is may face difficulties in their academic community or social difficulties which effected directly in their way of speaking in other hand factors to prestige with non – standard dialects may developed by group as prestige. We can say a prestige differ from state to state for example modern standard Arabic which is considerd high prestige it is used of social and political Arabic media in order to accessible a large number of Arabic people but it is not used as a conversation in their daily life and if someone speak a standard Arabic in streets people will laugh about it so according to Arabic language standard is not prestigious unlike English or French language which they considerd the standard as prestigious so prestige dialects differ from language to language .
2.0 Data for study:
The aim of this study is to find the differences between Arabic males and females in terms of greetings, happiness and sadness occasions. The samples of this study are males and females Arabic speakers. They are 10 persons, 5 males and 5 females native speakers of Arabic language.
4.0 Research in the field:
Ferguson (1959), states that sociolinguistics of Arabic language began as an academic unit and it has two discriminative varieties. These varieties are the high and the low ones. As for the high variety, it is related to the classical Arabic which is used in formal occasions and religious functions. The low variety is used in everyday communications between for instance, friends, and home.
Sociological studies have shown that women are more likely to use linguistic forms
thought to be better or more correct than those used by men. Trudgell (1983) provides an important reason for this. According to him, women are more conscious than men, therefore, they are more sensitive to linguistic norms.
Lakoff (1975) states that due of the low states of women and the pressure upon them to talk as a respected lady, comparing to men, women tend to use more hedges, intensifiers , a lot of polite forms and questions intonations .
Prestige is in two types. Overt type is seeking a prestige by assimilating to the standard language. Covert type is choosing not to talk in the standard, Manue and Campoy (2009). According, Coupland (1997) mentions that women prefer to use an overt standard prestige. However, men favor to use covert vernacular prestige.
Coates (1993) states that female speakers tend to use a higher rate of prestige than male speakers in different speech communities. In other words, the prestige norms seem to have a great influence on women than on men.
In addition, Sociolinguistics literature reveals that women employ and adopt the speech of rich people more than men do where the difference between rich and poor people speech is in standard language and dialect one, Angle and Biber (1981).
According to Lackoff (1973), in the case of gender, women are expected not to use strong insults and expletives such as damn the same as men do, while they are encouraged to use weaker ones like oh dear. Therefore, women have to change or substitute the strong insults with weaker ones.
Scherer (1979), states that the women consciously employ the use of more socially prestigious speech than men, while men tend to use more forceful speech than women.
Abu-Haidar (1989) investigated the occurrence of prestige in the spoken Arabic language in Baghdad, Iraq. Her study reveals that prestige is attributed to the standard Arabic language rather than the vernacular one. She adds that women tend to favor this variety.
On the other hand, in the case of the Iraqi society as claimed by Jaber and Krishnasamy (2012), female prestige is associated with the meaning of the words not with the standard language. Rather, men tend to use the standard features more women.
In a study was made on the Jordanian society, Malkawi (2011) found that the females’ respondents in her study avoid using old words when they want to attract the attention Females and males tend to use more prestigious words rather than the ancient ones.
As noticed by Bassiouney (2010), educated men and women in Egypt tend to talk in standard language because they think that it is more civilized than the dialect one. On the other hand, the uneducated women use the urban variety rather than the rural one for it is more prestigious as they think.
Arafa and Al-Ali (2010) proposed that females in Jordan adopt the urban non local varieties which are considered as civilized varieties, while males tend to use the local ones. As they state, the adoption of the varieties by both males and females are not arbitrary. Rather, it is limited to gender motivations and social expectations
Gordon in (1997) clarifies the reasons behind using a more prestigious language by women in the New Zealand society. He says that the usage of this prestigious language by women in New Zealand is a stereotype. According to his, it is a stereotype for it explains the avoidance of middle class females against the lower class females.
Who Practitioners in the field / lineage of the thought (others working in the area)
What are the landmark studies?
What are the theoretical and empirical contributions of the research area?
6.0 Implications of the study:
We can summarize the implication of this study:
6.1 Purpose of the study
The purpose of this study is to find the differences between Arabic males and females in using prestige in terms of greetings, happiness and sadness occasions.
6.2 Main Objective:
The study of sociolinguistics concentrates on language in the social context. Studying language in the social context focuses on the linguistics norms and variations. Speakers who differ from each other in age, social class, and ethnic group will differ from each other in their speech and this is called social variation. As for this study, it will focus on the linguistic norms and variations related to the gender of the speaker. More specifically, this study aims at studying the differences in speech between Arabic males and females in relation to their gender.
6.4 Limitation of the study
This study limited on small group who consist from Arabic male and female in order to discover the differences between Arabic males and females in using prestige in terms of greetings, happiness and sadness occasions.
This study tries to investigate the differences between Arabic males and females in terms of greetings, happiness and sadness occasions. According to the data analysis in this paper found that the female try to use a high level of prestige she try to use modern words and tries as possible to exclude the old words in order to attract attention while mail try to use medium level of prestige but also it is found that male tend to use modern prestige words than the old words.
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