Study guide for Quiz #2: Language, Gender and Sexuality
The quiz will consist of 6 short essay questions (one-paragraph answers of about 5 sentences). You will have to choose 3 out of the 6 questions. In the first part of the quiz, you will have a choice of one of two questions. Then you will choose the other two questions from the remaining four. You will have 45 minutes for the quiz.
This quiz will be cumulative, but it will focus mainly on the second half of the course. To study for the test, review the readings for the semester so far, and also look over your reaction papers. Some of the topics that are likely to appear on the quiz are given below. For each potential question, try to think of two or three examples from the readings that would support your answer. On the quiz, you may use examples from the textbook TWICE and examples from each article or film ONCE.:
Topics/sample questions – the following topics may appear in question form
- How do gender ideologies and language ideologies fit together? Put another way: How do cultural ideas about maleness and femaleness (masculine and feminine qualities) interact with ideas about language? You could consider everything from dialect speech and gender to ideas about male and female roles in the family or on the job and how this affects language usage.
- What is a “performance-based approach” to gender and language? Using examples from two of the READINGS for this semester (esp. March 24th and 31st) show how language usage is one aspect of “performing” one’s gender in conversation. The examples should show different types of gender performance (e.g. masculine and feminine).
- Several of the authors whose work we have read this semester have argued that men and women have different ideas about “ideal” conversational interactions and about the goals for conversation. Discuss this idea using at least TWO of the articles (one can be a film) we have read this semester. In each of the examples you use, how were men’s and women’s ideas about and goals for conversation different, according to the authors?
- What is the “gender order”? How does language use help to maintain the gender order? Offer two examples from our readings to illustrate your answer. Can language use challenge the gender order?
- From our readings or films, pick ONE example of how gender and language use fit together. Then offer an analysis of this example from TWO of the following theoretical perspectives: Social Power Model, Two Cultures Model, Performance Theory (toolkit).
- How do Eckert and McG (Chapter 9) relate the concept of a “linguistic toolbox” to their ideas about individual linguistic style? Pick two examples of resources from the “toolkit” and outline how they can contribute to individual style.
- After doing the readings for the week of April 14th and seeing the film about Jareena, do you feel that transgender categories, for example, hijras, ‘yan daudu or transsexuals, challenge or strengthen ideas about “masculine” and “feminine” language use? What are some of the aspects of “gender crossing” in language use that the authors point out or that you noticed yourself (be able to discuss two elements of language, such as gesture, voice pitch, vocabulary choice etc. and be familiar with at least two sources from this week).
- How is language use part of stereotypes about masculine and feminine language? What are the consequences for men and women who do not conform to expectations for gender-appropriate language use? Use two examples from our readings, only one of which can come from the textbook, to support your answer.
- What can cross-cultural studies tell us about gender and language that studies based in the US can’t? Be comfortable discussing at least two cross-cultural examples from our films or readings IN the SECOND HALF OF THE COURSE, focusing on how gender and language are presented as similar to or different from the US context.