English 5337 Spring 1997 Dr. Hurst


Course Objectives and Course Design

Our main goals will be to explore the relationship between gender and language, to understand the primary linguistic approaches to the topic of gender and language, and to appreciate the past history of the subject as well as the present issues and controversies which dominate the field. We will first learn some principles of language study, and then we will investigate various linguistic approaches to our subject. Aside from some introductory background lectures, the first three-fourths or so of the semester will be arranged around discussions of specified readings. The last part of the semester will be devoted to student presentations which will apply course concepts in the analysis of texts. The class will generally operate as a seminar; students should not expect a lecture-driven format.

Required Books

Hall, Kira, and Mary Bucholtz, eds. Gender Articulated. New York: Routledge, 1995. (Listed as Gender on the syllabus.)

Nilsen, Alleen Pace, Haig Bosmajian, H. Lee Gershuny, and Julia P. Stanley. Sexism and Language. Urbana, IL: NCTE, 1977. (Listed as NCTE on the syllabus.)

Roman, Camille, Suzanne Juhasz, and Cristanne Miller, eds. The Women & Language Debate: A Sourcebook. New Brunswick, NJ: Rutgers UP, 1994. (Listed as Sourcebook on the syllabus.)

Tannen, Deborah, ed. Gender and Conversational Interaction. New York: Oxford UP, 1993. (Listed as Tannen on the syllabus.)

Thorne, Barrie, Cheris Kramarae, and Nancy Henley, eds. Language, Gender, and Society. Rowley, MA: Newbury, 1983. (Listed as LG&S on the syllabus.)

Recommended Books and Materials

Coates, Jennifer. Women, Men, and Language: A Sociolinguistic Account of Sex Differences in Language. New York: Longman, 1993.

Frank, Francine Wattman, and Paula A. Treichler. Language, Gender and Professional Writing. New York: MLA, 1989. (Listed as MLA on the syllabus.)

An extensive list of supplemental readings and research sources is available at the library's reserve desk.

Due to the interdisciplinary nature of the course, researchers should be prepared to consult more than just the MLA Bibliography; reference indexes for psychology, history, linguistics, and other fields may be useful. Popular periodicals sometimes discuss issues related to this course, so it might also be wise to check such sources as the Reader's Guide to Periodical Literature and the New York Times Index. A list of selected reference sources and reference tools can be found on reserve at the library.

How To Contact Your Professor

Visit her in room 217 during office hours (8:30-9:30 & 2-3 TTh).

Send her an e-mail message <mjhurst@ttu.edu>.

Telephone her office (742-2524).

Speak to her before or after class to set an appointment.

Leave a message for her with the English Department secretary in 216 (742-2501).

Telephone her at home (number).

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Course Information: English 5337

Special Topics in Linguistics: Language and Gender

Course Requirements

Students will attend class regularly, having done the assigned readings in advance, and will participate positively in class discussions.

Students will taken two tests over the course material. We will discuss the formats of the tests well in advance of the examination dates.

Students will write a short critical review (under 5 pages) of a book, set of book reviews, or set of articles relevant to the topic of gender and language. Students will present brief reports to the class about their reviews. More information about this assignment appears on a separate sheet.

Students will write a brief research proposal (2 or 3 pages) setting forth their plans for their papers.

Students will write a substantial paper (about 15 pages) applying data from gender and language research in the explication of some text or portion of text. Details about this assignment appear on another hand-out. Students will discuss their research projects in well-developed oral presentations to the class. After their oral presentations, students may revise their work based on class discussions and instructor comments. More information about this assignment appears on a separate sheet.

General Class Policies

An individual's final grade will be determined by the quality of that person's daily work, written exams, research proposal, research paper, critical review, and oral presentations. Questions about grades and grading policy are welcome at any time. Assuming that a student's attendance, class preparation, and class presentations are appropriate for a graduate course, grades for the individual assignments and tests (the research paper will count as a double grade) will simply be averaged.

In their language and in their behavior, students will show respect for themselves, their classmates, and their professor. Controversial concepts will be discussed in this class, and in some of the readings students may encounter sexually explicit material and potentially inflammatory ideas. In classroom discussions, nevertheless, students will be expected to maintain the decorum and intellectual focus appropriate for academic discourse.

Only extreme emergencies should be the cause for absence on test days. Students will not have the opportunity to arrange individual make-up tests at their convenience. In general, students should not expect to be able to arrange make-up tests at all.

Students are welcome to set up conferences with their professor during her office hours or during another pre-established appointment. This professor expects students to take responsibility for their own learning and encourages discussions of coursework and constructive feedback about the course throughout the semester.

Any student who, because of a disability, may require special arrangements in order to meet course requirements should contact the instructor as soon as possible to make necessary accommodations. Students should present appropriate verification from Disabled Student Services, Dean of Students Office. No requirement exists that accommodations be made prior to completion of this approved university process.

Other information about university policies can be located in the Undergraduate Catalog and in the Directory of Classes. Students with concerns not addressed in this policy statement should discuss their situations with their professor at their earliest convenience.

Spring 1997 Language and Gender Syllabus: English 5337

This syllabus is subject to change;

any alterations will be announced in class.

T JAN 14 Course Introduction

Th JAN 16 A Brief Overview of Linguistics and of Gender and Language

Read: "Linguistic Sexism as a Social Issue" (NCTE);

"Introduction" (Gender);

"Language Gender and Society: Opening a Second Decade

of Research" (LG&S); and

"Editor's Introduction" (Tannen)

T JAN 21 A View from the 70s

Read: "Sexism ... English Vocabulary" (NCTE);

"Gender-Marking ... Usage and Reference" (NCTE);

"Sexism in Children's Books ..." (NCTE);

"Sexism ... Legislatures and Courts" (NCTE); and

"Sexism in Dictionaries ..." (NCTE)

Th JAN 23 More Early Work

Read: "Language and Woman's Place" (Sourcebook);

"Sexism in the Language of Literature" (NCTE);

"Sexism in the Language of Marriage" (NCTE);

"Small Insults ... Interruptions" (LG&S); and

"Consciousness as Style" (LG&S)

T JAN 28 French Theory

Read: Part One in Sourcebook. (N.B.: Ordinarily, this reading would be

placed later in the semester, but this term we will consider it now

in preparation for the Comparative Literature Symposium.)

Th JAN 30 Class will not meet so that students can attend the Comparative Literature

Symposium on French Feminism, January 30-February 1, at Texas Tech

T FEB 04 A View from the 80s

Read: "Beyond the He/Man Approach" (LG&S);

"Prescriptive Grammar and the Pronoun Problem" (LG&S);

"Linguistic Options ... Black Women ..." (LG&S);

"Intonation in a Man's World" (LG&S); and

"Interaction: The Work Women Do" (LG&S)

Th FEB 06 Class will not meet because of the Languaging Conference

T FEB 11 More Middle Work

Read: "Men, Inexpressiveness, and Power" (LG&S); and

"Men's Speech to Young Children" (LG&S)

Th FEB 13 Later Work on Masculine Speech

Read: "The Father Knows Best Dynamic" (Gender); and

"Challenging Hegemonic Masculinities" (Gender)

T FEB 18 Psychological Theory

Read: Part Two in Sourcebook

Th FEB 20 Acquisition: Language, Gender, and Children

Read: "Tactical...Boys' and Girls' Disputes" (Tannen); and

"Pickle Fights" (Tannen)

T FEB 25 Acquisition: Language, Gender, and Adolescents

Read: "Cooperative Competition" (Tannen); and

"'Go Get Ya a French!'" (Tannen)

Th FEB 27 Control Issues

Read: "Cries and Whispers" (Gender); and

"Pregnant Pauses" (Gender)

T MAR 04 What About Other Cultures?

Read: "'Tasteless' Japanese" (Gender); and

"Sometimes Spanish, Sometimes English" (Gender)

Th MAR 06 Test 1


T MAR 11 Social Issues

Read: pgs. 33-35 (the "Symbolic Capital" excerpt) from "Cooperative Competition" (Tannen); and

"Gender, Politeness ..." (Tannen)

Th MAR 13 More Social Issues

"Community and Contest" (Tannen); and

"Tactical ... Boys' and Girls' Disputes" (Tannen)

T MAR 18 Spring Break

Th MAR 20 Spring Break

T MAR 25 More Complicated Social Issues

Read: "Rethinking 'Sex Differences' ..." (Sourcebook);

"The Relativity ... Power and Solidarity" (Tannen); and

"Who's Got the Floor" (Tannen)


Th MAR 27 Complex Issues

Read: Only pgs. 301-303 of "Understanding ... Amount of

Talk" (Tannen); and

"Between Speech and Silence" (Sourcebook); and

T APR 01 Complex Issues: Early Work Revisited

Read: "Gender, Power, and Miscommunication" (Sourcebook); and

only pgs. 260-269 of "Women, Men, and Interruptions" (Tannen)

Th APR 03 Applications: What Do We Do Now?

Read: "Think Practically and Look Locally" (Sourcebook)

pgs. 182-190 from the Appendix (NCTE); and

the following pages from Part 2 of Language, Gender and

Professional Writing (MLA): 181; 188; 197-98; 207; 226; 233;

252-54; and 269

T APR 08 Emerging Directions

Read: "From Mulatta to Mestiza" (Gender);

"Language, Gender, and Power" (Gender); and

"Constructing Meaning, Constructing Selves" (Gender)

Th APR 10 Test 2

T APR 15 Reports on individual research

Th APR 17 Reports on individual research

T APR 22 Reports on individual research

Th APR 24 Reports on individual research

T APR 29 Reports on individual research


Late papers will not be accepted

T MAY 06 If we need additional time for reports on individual research,

we will meet this day from 10:30-1:00 (our scheduled exam period);

if all of the research presentations have been given, we will not meet