File spoon-archives/french-feminism.archive/french-feminism_1999/french-feminism.9910, message 3

Date: Fri, 08 Oct 1999 10:04:06 -0500
Subject: Re: profanity and gender

I wonder just what it is that you find "inherent" in such usage.  Do you mean
this in the sense of "natural" as opposed to "culturally constructed"?

Linda Payne
University of South Alabama

Irene Unpingco wrote:

> Hi!
> I'm a graduate student working on a paper on profanity and gender usage.
> Perhaps I should explain myself...
> I propose that there are inherent differences in the use of profanity and
> gender.  We see them on a daily basis, but we rarely take notice of them,
> except to become offended.  I was wondering if any one knew of any studies
> regarding the issue, or places I might be able to look to find some.  An
> example of what I mean would be the swear "bitch," which, when directed at a
> woman, is a derogative term and means she is mean, domineering and terrible.
>   Whereas, when the term "bitch" is applied to a man, it means that he is
> powerless, without strength, a 'beta-male' as it were.
> I've been stymied in my search since, when I search the Internet for
> 'profanity and gender' or the like, I'm generally given pornography sites or
> a Norwegian rock band, neither of which being what I'm looking for.
> Thanks,
> Irene Unpingco
> Graduate Student
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