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MEN ARE FROM MARS WOMEN ARE FROM VENUS GENDER DIFFERENCES IN COMMUNICATION Men and women typically use different discourse strategies in communication and in general womens linguistic behavior is disadvantageous compared to mens This paper will attempt to demonstrate this fact through the many stereotypes observed in Western society which influence our perceptions and may lead to actual gender differences Despite these assumptions it has been proven through countless studies beginning in the 1970s that men and women differ in their communicative competency and their discourse strategies in terms of conversational interactions Some of the major differences include vocabulary swearing self-disclosure intimacy issues questions nonverbal behavior verbal fillers and workplace attitudes The definition of gender is the learned behaviors a culture associates with being male or female Pearson 19918 Communication is when two people interact and intentionally or unintentionally negotiate the meaning of any phenomenon Pearson 19919 Men and women are taught through childhood caregivers to excel in different areas with social awards to keep these goals desirable Females are trained to demonstrate greater expressions of emotion while males are taught to be solid and impassive Male aggressiveness and competitiveness conflicts with the female desire to co-operate and avoid conflict Credgeur 19992 Social rules are reflected through language demonstrating unequal power relations based on gender Linguist Jennifer Coates cites two reasons for gender linked differences in communication The difference approach states that men and women belong to two distinct subcultures and they learn to communicate in different ways Breakdowns in communication occur because the participants are playing by different rules The second 2 approach is the dominance approach There is a gender hierarchy in our society with male domination and female subordination reflected in language structure and use The male world view is encoded in the English language King 19912 The feminist perspective is that language is discriminatory towards women as it has become one of the arenas in which social inequalities
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