CHAPTER 4
Arabic and gender

God created Eve from Adam’s bent lower rib. That is why women are
always twisted. They never talk straight

An Egyptian Bedouin recounting the story of Adam and Eve, quoted
by Abu-Lughod (1987: 124)


4.1 INTRODUCTION

The idea that women never talk straight is an assumption found not only among the Bedouins in Egypt, but also more universally. Holmes (1998: 461) contends that the myth that women talk too much exists in all cultures. Supposedly women do not know their own minds. They hedge and qualify everything they say. As Holmes puts it, they are supposed to be ‘indirect and devious’ (1998: 461).

However, the presupposition that men and women, because of their sex differences, speak differently should not be taken as a given. The research on gender has moved and developed beyond this presupposition. Holmes and Meyerhoff (2003b: 9) contend that when linguists make generalisations about a community at large, they apply their generalisations to both men and women. Gender is still an essential factor in language variation and change, but, it is a factor that interacts with other independent variables in a community, i.e. it has to be ‘put into context’ (2003b: 9). Sadiqi (2003a: 312) posits that it is in fact only within a particular culture that ‘gender performance acquires meaning.’

This chapter gives an overview of the study of gender in the field of linguistics in relation to Arabic. Gender has been defined by Coates (1993: 4) as ‘the term used to describe socially constructed categories based on sex’. On the other hand, gender is perceived by feminist linguists as something that one performs in an interaction rather than something which one has

-128-

Notes for this page

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items

Items saved from this book

This book has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this book

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this page

Cited page

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited page

Bookmark this page
Arabic Sociolinguistics
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page iii
  • Contents v
  • Acknowledgements viii
  • Charts, Maps and Tables x
  • Abbreviations xii
  • Conventions Used in This Book xiv
  • Introduction 1
  • Chapter 1 - Diglossia and Dialect Groups in the Arab World 9
  • Chapter 2 - Code-Switching 28
  • Chapter 3 - Language Variation and Change 88
  • Chapter 4 - Arabic and Gender 128
  • Chapter 5 - Language Policy and Politics 198
  • General Conclusion 273
  • Bibliography 276
  • Index 299
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this book

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Help
Full screen
/ 318

matching results for page

    Questia reader help

    How to highlight and cite specific passages

    1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
    2. Click or tap the last word you want to select, and you’ll see everything in between get selected.
    3. You’ll then get a menu of options like creating a highlight or a citation from that passage of text.

    OK, got it!

    Cited passage

    Style
    Citations are available only to our active members.
    Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

    1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

    Cited passage

    Thanks for trying Questia!

    Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

    Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

    Buy instant access to save your work.

    Already a member? Log in now.

    Author Advanced search

    Oops!

    An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.