Are gendered terms inference-loaded? Evidence from Greek talk-in-interaction
Keywords:grammatical gender, lexical gender, inference, gendered noticing, Greek, conversation analysis
The present study examines the relation between referential indexing of gender and speakers’ cognition in instances of gendered noticing in Greek talk-in-interaction, drawing on audio recordings of informal conversations as data and on conversation analysis as method. Gendered noticing occurs after actions that invoke specific presuppositions about gender, such as the norm of heterosexuality and stereotypes regarding ‘typical’ feminine and masculine attributes and behaviour. Speakers deploy gendered terms to attend to gender as a relevant aspect of context, and to position the self and others as women or men. It is shown that via gendered noticing, speakers uncover their covert assumptions about social gender and bring their conceptualisations of gender to the ‘surface’.
Ahmed, S. (2017) Living a Feminist Life. Durham: Duke University Press. https://doi.org/10.1215/9780822373377
Alvanoudi, A. (2014) Grammatical Gender in Interaction: Cultural and Cognitive Aspects. Leiden: Brill. https://doi.org/10.1163/9789004283152_003
Alvanoudi, A. (2017) The interface between language and cultural conceptualizations of gender in interaction: the case of Greek. In F. Sharifian (ed.) Advances in Cultural Linguistics 125–47. Singapore: Springer. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-981-10-4056-6_7
Archakis, A. and Lampropoulou, S. (2009) Talking different heterosexualities: the permissive, the normative and the moralistic perspective – evidence from Greek youth storytelling. Discourse & Society 20(3): 307–26. https://doi.org/10.1177/0957926509102400
Braun, F. (2001) The communication of gender in Turkish. In M. Hellinger and H. Bußmann (eds) Gender Across Languages: The Linguistic Representation of Women and Men 283–310. Amsterdam: John Benjamins. https://doi.org/10.1075/impact.9.17bra
Brown, P. (2007) Principles of person reference in Tzeltal conversation. In N. J. Enfield and T. Stivers (eds) Person Reference in Interaction: Linguistic, Cultural and Social Perspectives 172–202. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
Butler, J. (1990) Gender Trouble: Feminism and the Subversion of Identity. New York: Routledge.
Coates, J. (2013) The discursive production of everyday heterosexualities. Discourse & Society 24(5): 536–52. https://doi.org/10.1177/0957926513486070
Couper-Kuhlen, E. and Selting, M. (2018) Interactional Linguistics: Studying Language in Social Interaction. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
Eckert, P. and McConnell-Ginet, S. (2013) Language and Gender (2nd edn). Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. https://doi.org/10.1017/CBO9781139245883
Enfield, N. J. (2006) Social consequences of common ground. In N. J. Enfield and S. C. Levinson (eds) Roots of Human Sociality: Culture, Cognition and Interaction 399–430. Oxford: Berg.
Enfield, N. J. (2007) Meanings of the unmarked: how ‘default’ person reference does more than just refer. In N. J. Enfield and T. Stivers (eds) Person Reference in Interaction: Linguistic, Cultural and Social Perspectives 97–120. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. https://doi.org/10.1017/CBO9780511486746.006
Enfield, N. J. (2013) Relationship Thinking: Agency, Enchrony, and Human Sociality. New York: Oxford University Press. https://doi.org/10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199338733.001.0001
Enfield, N. J. and Levinson, S. C. (2006) Introduction: human sociality as a new interdisciplinary field. In N. J. Enfield and S. C. Levinson (eds) Roots of Human Sociality: Culture, Cognition and Interaction 1–35. Oxford: Berg.
Fillmore, C. J. (1982) Frame semantics. In The Linguistic Society of Korea (ed.) Linguistics in the Morning Calm 111–37. Seoul: Hanshin.
Garfinkel, H. (1967) Studies in Ethnomethodology. Englewood Cliffs, NJ: Prentice-Hall.
Goodwin, C. and Duranti, A. (1992) Rethinking context: an introduction. In A. Duranti and C. Goodwin (eds) Rethinking Context: Language as an Interactive Phenomenon 1–42. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
Grice, H. P. (1989) Studies in the Way of Words. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press.
Hamilton, M. C. (1991) Masculine bias in the attribution of personhood: people = male, male = people. Psychology of Women Quarterly 15(3): 393–402. https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1471-6402.1991.tb00415.x
Hellinger, M. and Bußmann, H. (eds) (2001–2002–2003) Gender Across Languages: The Linguistic Representation of Women and Men, Volumes 1, 2, 3. Amsterdam: John Benjamins. https://doi.org/10.1075/impact.9.05hel
Hellinger, M. and Motschenbacher, H. (eds) (2015) Gender Across Languages, Volume 4. Amsterdam: John Benjamins. https://doi.org/10.1075/impact.36
Hopper, R. and LeBaron, C. (1998) How gender creeps into talk. Research on Language and Social Interaction 31(1): 59–74. https://doi.org/10.1207/s15327973rlsi3101_4
Jefferson, G. (2004) Glossary of transcript symbols with an introduction. In G. H. Lerner (ed.) Conversation Analysis: Studies from the First Generation 13–31. Amsterdam: John Benjamins. https://doi.org/10.1075/pbns.125.02jef
Kitzinger, C. (2005a) Speaking as a heterosexual: (how) does sexuality matter for talkin-interaction? Research on Language and Social Interaction 38(3): 221–65. https://doi.org/10.1207/s15327973rlsi3803_2
Kitzinger, C. (2005b) Heteronormativity in action: reproducing the heterosexual nuclear family in after-hours medical calls. Social Problems 52(4): 477–98. https://doi.org/10.1525/sp.2005.52.4.477
Kitzinger, C. (2007) Is ‘woman’ always relevantly gendered? Gender and Language 1(1): 39–49. https://doi.org/10.1558/genl.2007.1.1.39
Land, V. and Kitzinger, C. (2005) Speaking as a lesbian: correcting the heterosexist presumption. Research on Language and Social Interaction 38(4): 371–416. https://doi.org/10.1207/s15327973rlsi3804_1
Levinson, S. C. (1983) Pragmatics. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
MacKay, D. G. and Fulkerson, D. C. (1979) On the comprehension and production of pronouns. Journal of Verbal Learning and Verbal Behavior 18(6): 661–73. https://doi.org/10.1016/S0022-5371(79)90369-4
McConnell-Ginet, S. (2003) ‘What’s in a name?’ Social labeling and gender practices. In J. Holmes and M. Meyerhoff (eds) The Handbook of Language and Gender 69–97. Oxford: Blackwell. https://doi.org/10.1002/9780470756942.ch3
McConnell-Ginet, S. (2008) Words in the world: how and why meanings can matter. Language 84(3): 497–527. https://doi.org/10.1353/lan.0.0040
McConnell-Ginet, S. (2012) Linguistics and gender studies. In R. Kempson, T. Fernando and N. Asher (eds) Philosophy of Linguistics 503–30. Amsterdam: Elsevier. https://doi.org/10.1016/B978-0-444-51747-0.50015-9
Motschenbacher, H. (2010) Language, Gender and Sexual Identity: Poststructuralist Perspectives. Amsterdam: John Benjamins. https://doi.org/10.1075/impact.29
Motschenbacher, H. (2011) Taking queer linguistics further: sociolinguistics and critical heteronormativity research. International Journal of the Sociology of Language 212: 149–79. https://doi.org/10.1515/ijsl.2011.050
Motschenbacher, H. (2014) Focusing on normativity in language and sexuality studies. Critical Discourse Studies 11(1): 49–70. https://doi.org/10.1080/17405904.2013.836113
Ochs, E. (1992) Indexing gender. In A. Duranti and C. Goodwin (eds) Rethinking Context: Language as an Interactive Phenomenon 335–58. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
Ostermann, A. C. (2017) ‘Nom mam. You are heterosexual’: Whose language? Whose Sexuality? Journal of Sociolinguistics 21(3): 348–70. https://doi.org/10.1111/josl.12240
Pavlidou, T. (2003) Women, gender and Modern Greek. In M. Hellinger and H. Bußmann (eds) Gender across Languages: The Linguistic Representation of Women and Men, Volume 3 175–99. Amsterdam: John Benjamins. https://doi.org/10.1075/impact.11.11pav
Pavlidou, T. (2016) ????????????? ??? ???????? ?????? (Making a Record of the Greek Language). Thessaloniki: Institute of Modern Greek Studies.
Rich, A. (1980) Compulsory heterosexuality and lesbian existence. Signs 5(4): 631–60. https://doi.org/10.1086/493756
Sacks, H. (1972a) An initial investigation of the usability of conversational data for doing sociology. In D. Sudnow (ed.) Studies in Social Interaction 31–74. New York: Free Press.
Sacks, H. (1972b) On the analyzability of stories by children. In J. J. Gumperz and D. H. Hymes (eds) Directions in Sociolinguistics: The Ethnography of Communication 325–45. New York: Holt, Rinehart and Winston.
Sacks, H., Schegloff, E. A. and Jefferson, G. (1974) A simplest systematics for the organization of turn-taking for conversation. Language 50(4): 696–735. https://doi.org/10.2307/412243; https://doi.org/10.1353/lan.1974.0010
Schegloff, E. A. (1996) Some practices for referring to persons in talk-in-interaction: a partial sketch of a systematics. In B. A. Fox (ed.) Studies in Anaphora 437–85. Amsterdam: John Benjamins. https://doi.org/10.1075/tsl.33.14sch
Schegloff, E. A. (2007) Sequence Organization in Interaction. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. https://doi.org/10.1017/CBO9780511791208
Selting, M. (1996) Prosody as an activity-type distinctive cue in conversation: the case of so-called ‘astonished’ questions in repair initiation. In E. Couper-Kuhlen and M. Selting (eds) Prosody in Conversation: Interactional Studies 231–70. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. https://doi.org/10.1017/CBO9780511597862.008
Sharifian, F. (2011) Cultural Conceptualisations and Language: Theoretical Framework and Applications. Amsterdam: John Benjamins. https://doi.org/10.1075/clscc.1
Silverstein, M. (1976) Shifters, linguistic categories, and cultural description. In K. H. Basso and H. A. Selby (eds) Meaning in Anthropology 11–55. Albuquerque, NM: University of New Mexico Press.
Slobin, D. I. (1996) From ‘thought and language’ to ‘thinking for speaking’. In J. J. Gumperz and S. C. Levinson (eds) Rethinking Linguistic Relativity 70–96. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
Wierzbicka, A. (2006) English: Meaning and Culture. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
How to Cite
© Equinox Publishing Ltd.
For information regarding our Open Access policy, click here.