Feminists are “language rapists”

I love anti-feminists so much, because the jokes just write themselves.
David Gelernter from the American Enterprise Institute for Public Policy Research has a doozy of an article up, “Feminism and the English Language.” Basically, Gelernter is pissed that some words are used differently now (i.e. firefighter instead of fireman) as not to be sexist.

How can I teach my students to write decently when the English language has become a wholly-owned subsidiary of the Academic-Industrial Complex? Our language used to belong to all its speakers and readers and writers. But in the 1970s and ’80s, arrogant ideologues began recasting English into heavy artillery to defend the borders of the New Feminist state. In consequence we have all got used to sentences where puffed-up words like “chairperson” and “humankind” strut and preen, where he-or-she’s keep bashing into surrounding phrases like bumper cars and related deformities blossom like blisters; they are all markers of an epoch-making victory of propaganda over common sense.

The feminine is pissing all over his English language and he’s not going to take it anymore! I love that he thinks words like ‘chairperson’ are “puffed up” and “strut.” He might as well call the word an uppity bitch and get it over with.
Gelernter also calls feminists “language rapists” and writes that what we’ve done to language “skreak like fingernails on a blackboard.” Which, you know, is not at all telling.
I guess is what fellows at right-wing think tanks do with their time. Now if you’ll excuse me, I have to go castrate some sentences before my day is through.

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110 Comments

  1. GopherII
    Posted March 1, 2008 at 1:34 pm | Permalink

    “Which, uh… has to do with one party being active, and the other party being passive, does it not? ”
    I assume RoymacIII that you are unorgasmic? You’d have to be in order to claim that a woman experiences sex in passive mode. Perhaps you just lie back and say the pledge of allegiance?
    But for the rest of the 99.9999% of women,… they do not take a misogynistic point of view created from the invisible sexual identity that only seeing themselves from the angle of men as the ‘actor’ and women as the ‘passive’ would create. We do not see ourselves from the point of view that only a man who developed his sense of sexuality from the 1940s would see, and thereby have the effect on herself of distorting her female sexual identity by perceiving herself as a passive participant in her own chosen sexual act.
    Really RoymacIII, you are a right-winger even if you dont like to admit it.I highly doubt youve ever cum.

  2. GopherII
    Posted March 1, 2008 at 1:40 pm | Permalink

    BTW RoymacIII, are you a male or a female? It may explain your primitive oitlook on sexuality.
    Remember, sex doesnt happen to women, they are ACTIVE in sex. Not every sexual act is PENIS + VAGINA = sex.

  3. Posted March 1, 2008 at 2:03 pm | Permalink

    Wow, I forgot I commented here. Sorry to drop a comment and not follow up on it.
    GopherII is right. I was referring to our language about sex, metaphors and how they’re shaped by a male-active, female-passive view of sex, as well as a focus on the importance of the phallus. Most of the slang reflects this. Sex is perceived as something that is done to women, rather than something that is a mutual experience.
    The book I’m thinking of is older than Vagina Monologues, I think. Many of my books are packed up so I can’t glance through them.

  4. GopherII
    Posted March 1, 2008 at 7:48 pm | Permalink

    A book I read that really illuminated gendered verbage was “Egalia’s Daughters,” by Gerd Brantenberg. The book exists in a different world where men wear a “peho” which is a bra for the penis. Men are known as “menwim,” and females as “wim.” Its one of my favorite books. The story is about a young ‘masculinists’ coming of age who recognizes the injustices that males are treated within their socitey and attempts to change it. The book mirrors the gender struggles in our society and places men in the position of the oppressed and womyn as the oppressors. I love the book, and I wish Gerd Brantenberg would write a sequel.
    Question that came up when changing the spelling of woman:
    I know we can change ‘woman’into ‘womyn,’but how do we write ‘women?’

  5. lyndorr
    Posted March 1, 2008 at 8:02 pm | Permalink

    Womyns? I think when I see womyn, I want to say it like women.

  6. mandalanis
    Posted March 2, 2008 at 11:16 pm | Permalink

    I think he’s just too lazy to write out ‘humankind’ than ‘mankind’…it IS a few extra letters you know….. I can’t believe this scum is teaching children!

  7. pacifistvigilante
    Posted March 3, 2008 at 2:38 am | Permalink

    Language changes over time. To be “linguistical purest” is ridiculous.
    You’d think he’d be more concerned with words like “w00t” being added to the dictionary.
    Now that I think about it, it must be feminisms fault for young boys struggling with English in schools.[/sarcasm]

  8. Posted March 3, 2008 at 4:37 am | Permalink

    Geoff Pullum just wrote a measured response to this over at Language Log:
    http://itre.cis.upenn.edu/~myl/languagelog/archives/005423.html

  9. anomrabbit
    Posted March 3, 2008 at 10:08 am | Permalink

    judy, you got to it before I did! I was actually going to submit this for consideration over there but I couldn’t find a general contact address.
    I like how Gelernter’s argument can be summed up in three bullet points.

  10. GopherII
    Posted March 4, 2008 at 12:26 am | Permalink

    pacifistvigilante,
    AAAAh! Oh no…the BOYS CRISIS! Dont forget, feminism is also responsible for boys failing grades, laziness, broncchitis, ect….the list never ends, according to some!
    Time to crank out the male only authors, male exclusive titled books (ahem…Dangerous Book for Boys), and paint the whole school blue for shucks sakes!

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