How language reflect encapsulate its users attitudes toward men and women ?LANGUAGE & SOCIAL CONTEXT

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Ashley Kannan eNotes educator| Certified Educator

I think that language is a malleable object, able to be fluid and reflective of social times and trends.  In this light, language can display attitudes towards men and women.  It can also be reflective of gender bias as well as implications regarding social conceptions of gender or other classifications through its use.  The fact that language can reflect these elements helps to show how individuals' attitudes are encapsulated through its use and development.  When language is seen in this light, it can be something of a prism through which social expectations and norms are understood.  Perhaps, this vision of language as being able to capture individuals' belief systems might be an arena where language can show what is and provide the motivation to change it to what should be.  I think that a great example of this is the use of the word "ho."  In modern use, the term "ho" was something employed to describe women.  Only after it was used so much did it reflect attitudes that can be degrading towards women.  The use of the word in such frequent and derogatory context caused many individuals to open the dialogue as to how women are perceived in culture and in artistic settings.  This dialogue represented transformation of what was to what could or should be.