Grammar in Gender

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Grammar in Gender

In a casual talk, people are likely to refer the others by what they are and not by their profession. For example, it is easy to find a man referring to a woman who is a medical practitioner as ‘a lady doctor’, while a man may have a demeaning title as ‘a male nurse’. These terms are correct in accordance to grammar, but when put in the category of gender, they are demeaning. That is to say, a casual talk may talk the effect of one having masculinity or femininity, and when this is found as odd, the talk may appear demeaning. The grammatical gender can be traced in the Indo-European languages, which tended to be a system of noun classification categorized on the similarities of the sound. The word gender in its original form did not refer to the differences in sex but had a notion of genus in Greek and this referred to race or kind. However, some people felt that sex is a kind of classification and that is how it earned its current respect as referring to either a woman or a man (Feminine or masculine).

Even in the most developed nations, there is lack of consciousness when it comes to refer to people by their gender. The word humankind in a number of instances may be used to refer to human beings; perhaps drawing a lot from the bible. Instead of using, the word police, the term police officers are seen to represent whether one is a male or a female. On the other hand, the word nurse is generally seen to be a connotation or a place for women practicing in the areas of medicine. That is why if a woman is practicing as a doctor, it appears odd, and it is easy to find people refer her not as a doctor but a female doctor. Nations like Germany, Spain and French have two nouns namely feminine and masculine out of the three that includes even neutral or neuter. This means that the third is often ignored while the two are seen as okay for use.

This has been a source of conflict with the feminine noun seen as insignificant though masculinity represent all gender. Some jobs have been regarded as belonging to certain gender; for example, a barber is seen squarely as a job for the males while the work in a salon belongs to the women. Therefore, if either gender is seen to be working contrary to what is expected, it is seen as odd and to some societies, it is a taboo. It is only recent that the world came to accept that a woman could be a president, and not even in high nations such as United States of America have ever had a woman as a president. If the last contention between Hillary Clinton and Barrack Obama favored Hillary Clinton, then, it is most likely that she could have earned herself a title as the woman president. This kind of system in the world may not take change easily as the gradual change is very slow. However, it is time that this kind of language changes finally and adopts neutral references or neuter.

However, the English language is seen to be a little bit favorable to both genders, and in the overall gender grammar. In most cases, pronouns are used instead of the nouns, and by speaking or writing, they seem favorable and acceptable. For example, instead of noting that Mary is a doctor, she is a doctor is a little bit acceptable. He is a nurse, she is a security guard, she is a barber, he is a cook and other is seen to be good in mentioning.  However, still, the differentiation of the gender is still vivid and it generally shows that the tendency to use the term gender as a form of category is not easily erased in the mind of many. The best to adopt in the overall and in grammar is by using the neuter to cover everything. Instead of watch woman or guard, the term could be security guard, or instead of a male nurse, female doctor, the favorites could just be doctors and nurses.


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