Robin Lakoff- Women's attributes of speech
Robin Lakoff said that there are certain features of language that are more likely to be used by women.
- Hedges: "sort of", "kind of".
- Super polite forms: "would you mind if...?"
- Use of interrogatives (questions) rather than imperatives (commands)
- Empty adjectives: "lovely, adorable, nice".
- Avoid coarse language and expletives
- Apologise More: "I'm sorry but..."
- Tag questions: "It's hot in here, isn't it?"
- Indirect requests: "It's really cold in here!" (Implying, can a window be shut or the heating put on).
- Speak less frequently
Deborah Tannen- Difference Theory
Deborah Tannen- Explores the interaction of men and women as being different. Said that men and women see speech in different ways and use it for different reasons.
She came to 6 conclusions:
- Status vs Support
- Independence vs Intimacy
- Advice vs Understanding
- Information vs Feelings
- Orders vs Proposals
- Conflict vs Compromise
Zimmerman and West- Dominance Theory
Zimmerman and West found that in 11 conversations:
- Men interrupted 46 times.
- Women interrupted 2 times.
Theory suggests that men are more likely to interrupt than women in a mixed sex conversation.
They also believed that men interrupted in order to dominate and have control over the conversation.
William O'Barr and Bowman Atkins
They studied courtroom cases and witness speeches in 1980.
They found that language differences are based on situation- specific authority or power- not gender!
(Good for disproving other language theories!)