‘Inferior researchers’

Recently, I was asked by a female colleague to offer feedback on a document summarising her achievements. As I was reading the text, which is in Polish, I was struck by the fact that whenever she described herself, she used nouns in the masculine form. And so, for example, when she described herself as a researcher, she used the word badacz (masculine) and not badaczka (feminine).

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Pull no punches

I decided to read a grant application on the plane from Rome. As I was reading it, I got more and more frustrated with what was written. Basically, the project was all over the place. From strange and unaccounted for concepts, through bizarre associations between groups, all the way to a reality which I simply didn’t recognise. The review was not very difficult write, well, perhaps apart from the fact that it was very negative. That’s life, though. Continue reading “Pull no punches”

The default male killer

In a recent blog, Deborah Cameron explains and extends the notion of the ‘default male’. To give the most basic and well-known example, in language it is about using for example the male pronoun in reference to the generic person. Speakers, social actors, addressees etc. would have been referred to by the default ‘he’. But I find the example of ‘ethnic jokes’ particularly compelling; the ‘E Continue reading “The default male killer”

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