Posts Tagged Language

What google teaches us about our views on the sexes

Chris Harrison, a Ph.D. student in Human-Computer Interaction at Carnegie Mellon, created an infographic of how “he” and “she” are used in Google’s digital books archive, which contains  200 years worth of published material. The graph shows the 120 most common words used after “he” and “she,” ordered in decreasing frequency.

When I asked Harrison what he found most interesting or surprising about the data, he responded (spoken like a true engineer): “Not any one thing was most interesting.  As with many large data sets, there are many fascinating patterns.  It is analogous to a single thread being rather unremarkable.  From from many threads one can weave a tapestry.”

Chris Harrison, a Ph.D. student in Human-Computer Interaction at Carnegie Mellon, created an infographic of how “he” and “she” are used in Google’s digital books archive, which contains  200 years worth of published material. The graph ...

vageuphemisms

A Pocket Guide to Vaginal Euphemisms

Yesterday I noticed this fact sheet about vaginas circulating on Tumblr. It includes a list of common euphemisms, most of them pretty negative. I’ve taken the liberty of categorizing the list so you can draw your own feminist conclusions:


Click to view full size.

Yesterday I noticed this fact sheet about vaginas circulating on Tumblr. It includes a list of common euphemisms, most of them pretty negative. I’ve taken the liberty of categorizing the list so you can draw your ...

Drop the i-word

Colorlines has just launched this really important campaign to get folks to stop calling people, and particularly immigrants, “illegal.” I wrote not too long ago about how the AP style book promotes this language.

Watch the video (transcript after the jump) and you’ll be convinced. Then go sign the pledge and do what you can to eliminate anti-immigrant sentiment.

Feministing has signed the pledge. Will you?

Colorlines has just launched this really important campaign to get folks to stop calling people, and particularly immigrants, “illegal.” I wrote not too long ago about how the AP style book promotes this language.

Watch the video ...

Drop the i-word

Colorlines has just launched this really important campaign to get folks to stop calling people, and particularly immigrants, “illegal.” I wrote not too long ago about how the AP style book promotes this language.

Watch the video (transcript after the jump) and you’ll be convinced. Then go sign the pledge and do what you can to eliminate anti-immigrant sentiment.

Feministing has signed the pledge. Will you?

Colorlines has just launched this really important campaign to get folks to stop calling people, and particularly immigrants, “illegal.” I wrote not too long ago about how the AP style book promotes this language.

Watch the video ...

Hey AP Style Book: Immigrants aren’t “illegal”


Screw you AP Style Book.
The AP Style Book is a resource for journalists on language, spelling, pronunciation and proper word usage. I’m not clear how the AP Style Book makes decisions, but it is widely regarded and highly used by journalists.
This explains why most of the mainstream media still uses the term “illegal immigrant.” I find the term offensive and disrespectful, as do most immigration activists. People are not illegal, actions are. The advocate community uses the term “undocumented immigrant” which the Stylebook clearly disagrees with.
Thankfully, they don’t advocate using the term “alien.” But illegal needs to go.
If you want to contact the AP Style Book and lobby them to ...


Screw you AP Style Book.
The AP Style Book is a resource for journalists on language, spelling, pronunciation and proper word usage. I’m not clear how the AP Style Book makes decisions, ...

CA school district bans the dictionary. Seriously.

Uh oh, I see the word ‘vagina’  *faints*

I know we covered this in yesterday’s What We Missed, but I just had to give it a bit more ink.  The Menifee, California school district has pulled all copies of Merriam-Webster’s Collegiate Dictionary because it contains definitions for “oral sex.”

And now, the school district is forming a committee to decide whether dictionaries that contain sexual terms should be permanently banned from classrooms.

The decision was made without consultation with the district’s school board and has raised concerns among First Amendment experts and some parents.

Other parents and Menifee residents, though, have praised the district’s decision, saying a collegiate-level dictionary is inappropriate for younger children.

A memo from the district’s assistant superintendent for curriculum ...

Uh oh, I see the word ‘vagina’  *faints*

I know we covered this in yesterday’s What We Missed, but I just had to give it a bit more ink.  The Menifee, California school district has pulled all ...

A new script for talking about abortion

When a friend is sick, you bring her soup. When she loses a loved one, you bring her flowers. But what do you do when she has an abortion?
Last week, one of my good friends announced to me that she was two and a half months pregnant, and had booked an appointment for an abortion that weekend. I offered to come with her, an offer she refused, saying she preferred to be alone.
Saturday morning came and went, and she had her abortion. She wasn’t emotional about it; she had only recently discovered that she was pregnant, and felt no attachment to the fetus. She wasn’t nervous or afraid; it wasn’t her first abortion, and she knew what to ...

When a friend is sick, you bring her soup. When she loses a loved one, you bring her flowers. But what do you do when she has an abortion?
Last week, one of my good friends announced ...

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