Kristina Fjelkestam”How I Learned to Love the Bomb”: Peirce and Feminist Semiotics (Friday 20. Oct., 9:45-10:45. M101)

What can a decent language theory, suitable for the emancipatory project, look like? The complex relationship between text and context has always been a central issue for feminist literary scholars, and its importance has for instance been pointed out by Toni Morrison in her Nobel lecture: ”Oppressive language does more than represent violence; it is violence.” However, the saussurean tradition which dominated semiotic thinking all through the twentieth century has several flaws, amongst them the misogynistic effects of structuralism. In my talk I will describe how I instead came to appreciate the semiotics of C. S. Peirce, and eventually started to consider it a possible point of departure for theorizing language from a feminist perspective.

Jón Ingvi Kjaran“Fag, dude, dyke, fat or hot”. Word prevalence among high school students in terms of gender/sexual stereotypes (Friday 20. Oct., 15:45-16:45. M101)

The aims of my lecture are two: Firstly to give an overview of research on (hetero)sexist language within institutions and how words / symbols are used and/or misused in terms of sexuality/gender identity. In other words, how is heteronormativity sustained within different institutions of society through particular language? Secondly the results from two research projects will be presented, in which the focus is on attitudes of high school students to stereotypes of appearances, gender and sexual orientation, as well as word prevalence in terms of gender/sexual stereotypes. Two different surveys were conducted in Icelandic high schools. The former one was a quantitative photo-survey which were conducted in two high schools. It consisted of seven photographs that were selected beforehand. These photographs were considered to be typical of certain characteristics, such as sexual orientation, appearances, masculinity or femininity. Students were asked to mark a given word(s) that they thought was relevant to each image. The findings indicate that there was a significant gender difference in the answers of the participants, when it came to the use of certain words in describing the photographs in the survey. The second survey was conducted in four high schools and its aim was to explore if and how frequently students either had heard or used themselves negative words in terms of sexual orientation and/or gender identity. The data for the second survey are still being analyzed and the preliminary results will be presented in this lecture. Generally, it could be concluded from the findings presented in the lecture that many characteristics of institutionalized heterosexism were noted in attitudes and responses of the students, although in varying degrees. Boys used for example more negative words in terms of sexaulity/gender identity and they adopted rather than the girls the dominant discourse of femininity and masculinity. Both sexes, however, were influenced by the dominant discourse about the appearances, stereotypes of gender and sexual orientation, suggesting that the gender system continues to affect the culture of the high schools and the attitudes of their students.

Helga Hilmisdóttir: Gender and Pronouns in Icelandic Debates and Conversations (Saturday 21. Oct., 9:00-10:00. M101)

In recent years, pronouns have been a central issue in discussions about language and gender in Iceland. This is not surprising, since pronouns are a basic component of a language at the same time as they reveal how speakers categorize other members of society. So far, research has mostly been structure-oriented focusing on issues such as agreement, deixis, and anaphora in examples constructed by the researcher. In these studies, the choice of pronouns has been explained in terms of two separate gender categorizations: grammatical gender and referential gender. Grammatical gender, on one hand, is an inherent property of a noun, and it is not affected by the non-linguistic reality. Referential gender, on the other hand, identifies the referent as male, female or neuter.

In this paper, the aim is to analyze how gender is used in authentic, recorded conversation from an interactional perspective. In particular, I will focus on the gender use when interlocutors are referring to non-present persons. The database consists of ca 30 hours of conversational data recorded between 1996 and 2017. The conversations represent a wide range of interactional settings, including everyday conversations, phone calls, radio interviews about current affairs, and moderated debates.

The data show, that the choice between personal pronouns is sometimes problematic in conversation. This is particularly the case when interlocutors talk about non-recognitional referents or referents that have formal occupational roles. In these cases, the persons are often referred to with a lexical phrase that has a grammatical gender which may or may not correspond with the referential gender. In this talk, I will analyze some of these sequences and discuss notions such as action and system relevance of gender.

Stina Ericsson: Sustaining and Challenging Gender and Sexuality Norms: Cis, Hetero, and Family Normativities in Children's Interactions (Saturday 21. Oct., 15:00-16:00. M101)

Seeing family as a locus of ‘intra-action’ (Lykke 2010:51) between the micro level of everyday intersubjective actions and macro level discourses, the form and meanings of the family vary with time and place. Our time and place – say, the ‘West’ from the end of the 20th century onwards – is characterised by an individualisation of relationships, of love and intimacy being connected to self-identity, of an increased diversity of family forms in both practice and legislation correlating with, for instance, sexual identity and continued shared parenthood following divorce or separation, together with a somewhat problematised but still fairly naturalised heteronormativity (e.g. Beck & Beck-Gernsheim 1995; Giddens 1991; Ericsson 2012; Hockey, Meah & Robinson 2007; Weeks, Heaphy & Donovan 2001). Individualisation and diversity are also increasingly seen with regards to gender, and this in media, politics, and everyday life, including trans, intersex, and various other non-binary identities and positionings (King 2015; Wojahn 2015). Within the sociology of the family, as well as within interactionally focused linguistic research, the last couple of decades have also seen an increased interest in and awareness of children’s competences and agencies (e.g. Christensen & James 2008; Gardner & Forrester 2010).

           Against this background, my research investigates children’s experiences of family and relationships in Sweden today, as witnessed by interactional data in the form of conversations between children and parents. In this talk, I will specifically present and discuss gender, sexuality, and family normativities in such interactions, showing how norms are being both challenged and sustained through linguistic means at the micro level. Data comes from the research project Daddy, Daddy, Child, with 14 participating families, including 24 children aged 5–8 years. Families include single mothers by choice through insemination/IVF, same-sex and different-sex parental couples, parents who are married and not married, parents living together and not. Data was elicited and recorded using a purpose-designed tablet app, encouraging conversations on the topics of one’s own and other families, living together, marriage/weddings, and love.

           Using the notion of ‘family display’ (Finch 2007), I show how form and content correlate in children’s presentations of their own families, and how this correlation normalises certain kinds of families and not others. Regarding sexuality, the analysis of the data reveals the multiple and sometimes conflicting ways in which norms are confirmed and challenged. For example, in response to the question Who can get married?, 8-year-old Marika states that It doesn’t matter, boy and boy can marry, and girl and girl can marry. Here, the explicit statement of it doesn’t matter invites an inference that ‘it’, on the contrary, does/can matter. Finally, I will show how the genderings that the children and parents do in the conversations re-establish a firmly binary and cisnormative view of gender.


Fredag 20 okt., 11:00-12:40


Evan D. Bradley: Linguistic or gender prescriptivism? Judgments of English gender-neutral pronouns (11:00-11:30)

The lack of a true gender-neutral personal pronoun in standard English has led to numerous attempts to reform the language, most of which have had limited success. In the past, some style guides prescribed ‘he’ for a generic person, which is today seen as sexist. Alternatives like ‘he or she’ have been criticized for assuming a gender binary. Singular/epicene ‘they’ has a long history, but has drawn criticism from prescriptivist grammarians. Newly coined pronouns have not gained wide use. Is this resistance driven by strict adherence to grammar rules (e.g., “‘they’ is plural”) or by attitudes about gender which are at odds with the goals of the linguistic change itself (e.g., “there are two genders”)? To understand factors driving resistance to or acceptance of gender-neutral language, we asked English speakers to rate the grammaticality of sentences containing gender-neutral phrasings and non-standard uses of gendered pronouns, including ‘he or she’, singular ‘they’ (for generic and specific referents), ‘it’, and ‘ze’. Personality has been linked to reactions to grammatical and spelling errors, so participants also completed the Big Five inventory. The Gender Role Attitudes Scale assessed endorsement of sexist attitudes and binary gender norms. Singular ‘they’ is acceptable to most English speakers when referring to hypothetical persons of unknown gender. ‘They’ referring to specific individuals of unknown/non-binary gender is less grammatical, but the degree of acceptability depends on the rater’s personality and gender attitudes: those who are more extraverted rate specific ‘they’ as less grammatical, and those with more transcendent gender attitudes rate it as more acceptable. Alternatives like ‘ze’ are less grammatical, regardless of gender attitudes. The results suggest that resistance to gender-neutral language (especially that which challenges a binary) may be driven as much by attitudes about gender as by linguistic conservatism.


Hope Maxwell Shcmid: Vocal pitch characteristics of those outside the gender binary (11:35-12:05)

Vocal pitch, pitch range, and vowel formants are associated with gender and are influenced by biological and sociocultural factors. Basic research has identified perceptual cues to masculinity and femininity, and applied research has helped transgender clients make their voices more feminine or masculine; fewer studies have examined the voices of those who are neither male or female (non-binary). We examined vocal pitch and vowel formants of non-binary speakers compared to binary cisgender female and male speakers. We expected two possible outcomes: (1) non-binary speakers incorporate vocal qualities characteristic of both masculinity and femininity, because their gender is a midpoint between the two; thus nonbinary speakers pattern in between males and females. (2) non-binary speakers show distinct patterns not clearly masculine or feminine, because they reject the performance of masculine/feminine norms altogether. Six non-binary, 9 female, and 5 male native American English speakers were recorded reading the Rainbow Passage. Average, minimum, and maximum pitch were recorded, along with first and second formant values for three vowels (i, a, u). Subjects also answered questions about their sex and gender. Average pitch of males and females differed, as expected. Average pitch for non-binary speakers was intermediate between male and female. Non-binary speakers used a greater pitch range than both males and females. Males and females also differed in vowel formants, notably in backness for /i/ and height for /a/, and non-binary formants were intermediate between male and female. Non-binary speakers have some vocal qualities which blend typical masculine/feminine values (average pitch, vowel formants), and some which diverge from both binary norms (pitch range). These findings have ramifications for our understanding of the role of voice in gender performance and perception, as well as clinicians working with transgender/non-binary clients. Implications for transgender speakers with binary gender will also be discussed.

Maria Fremer: Tilltalsformer och kön i reklamfilmer från 1920-1980 (12:10-12:40)

Tilltalsformer och kön i reklamfilmer från 1920–1980 Av de språkliga variabler som avspeglar den allmänna samhällsutvecklingen under 1900-talet, med ökande jämlikhet, informalisering och intimisering, är nog tilltalsskicket den som märks tydligast i vardagslivet. Ett kraftfullt exempel är den svenska du-reformen kring år 1967, då ett komplicerat tilltalssystem med starka krav på titeltilltal övergavs till förmån för den informella tilltalsformen du, som idag är dominerande i de flesta situationer. Förändringen var snabb och genomgripande. Den var inte en följd av någon medveten språkvårdssträvan, utan spred sig genom ställningstaganden från personer inom arbetslivet och i offentligheten. Du-reformen har därför rönt intresse speciellt bland sociolingvister. I detta föredrag analyserar jag tilltalsformer i reklamfilmer med fokus på variabeln kön. Undersökningsmaterialet består av ca 400 filmer. En del är så kallade husmorsfilmer, selektivt riktade till en publik bestående av husmödrar. Andra är vanliga korta annonsfilmer med låg selektivitet – sådana som visats på biografer före den egentliga filmförevisningen. Mina data visar hur tilltalet varierar beroende på målgrupp. Husmorsfilmerna har förstås en uttalad målgrupp, men även de korta annonsfilmerna är oftast på ett tidstypiskt sätt tydligt riktade antingen till kvinnor (t.ex. produkter för hårvård, städning och matlagning) eller till män (bl.a. bilar och försäkringar). Kvinnor tilltalas oftare formellt, medan män tilltalas kamratligt informellt. Det gammaldags formella tilltalet lever kvar i husmorsfilmerna i tio år efter att det försvunnit från de korta annonsfilmerna. Småningom kommer dock det informella tilltalet in överallt, med början i humoristiska sammanhang, mellan män, och i filmer som projicerar ungdomlighet och en modern, sund och sportig livsstil. Under 1970-talet växer en ny tilltalskultur snabbt fram, samtidigt som filmmaterialet också i övrigt återspeglar en ny värld, där kvinnor och män otvunget utför hushållssysslor tillsammans.

Dominik Baumgarten: (Digital) beauty and fashion advertising in ´chick lit novels´ (11:00-11:30) 

(Digital) beauty and fashion advertising in ‘chick lit novels’ Literary studies traditionally focus on the cultural development of narratives with regard on the finished form an author presents to the readers. In rare cases two or more versions of the same text (especially from early modernity backwards) are subject of investigation. Advertising, on the other hand, is constituted by its ever-growing multitude of different appearances. One single product can be advertised by a broad variety of multi-media campaigns to display and attract the product at hand to as many possible consumers as possible (Janich: 2010). In particular, brand advertising is known to much more gender-sensitive than most literary publications. In case of sponsored literature (beginning with Weldon’s 2001 novel Bulgari Connection) advertisers co-finance authors in exchange for an exposed featuring of their brands within a literary display. With this, the advertising culture takes possess of a literary narrative and transforms it due to its own necessities – to create a brand narrative (Baumgarten: 2013). In most cases women’s literature is used as platform for ‘typical female’ brands and product placement. In the print-version these brand narratives are inserted once and remain in the form they had at publication date. Recent online publications and e-books, however, provide the possibility to update the content of a novel via various hyper-textual structures, which are constantly renewed online. As opposed to literary tradition, these hypertexts supply an online-novel with continuously changing advertising content, also the narrative can therefore be slightly changed on a rolling basis. Based on the 2006 “chick lit” series Cathy’s Book the planned talk aims to demonstrate the possibilities for gender-related advertising and its constant online updating. The publication sponsored by Procter&Gamble represents the use of (digital) literature for a broad product range, in particular for beauty and fashion advertising.

Judith Lejeck: Non-feminist feminists in Anton Chekhov‘s Three Sisters (11:35-12:05)

Non-feminist “feminists” in Anton Chekhov’s Three Sisters Discourse analysis theories, along with feminist studies theories, can be applied to the four main female characters in the Russian drama Three Sisters, written in 1900 by Anton Chekhov. In this presentation I show how these characters, living in late 19th century Russia, a patriarchy that restricts women both legally and socially, demonstrate agency, autonomy, and power despite living in a discriminatory society. Using methodology from various theories of discourse analysis and feminist studies, such as framing, facework, speech acts, and agency, I present evidence that these women find ways to establish a positive identity. This study contributes to the fields of discourse analysis and feminist linguistics by analyzing a work of dramatic literature, rarely used as a source in either of these fields.

José Antonio Jodar Sanchés: Sexuality in Goytisolo‘s Ántagonia: A Corpus-based Study (12:10-12:40)

In my research I look at the key concepts and ideologies underlying the notion of sexuality in the novel "Antagonía" by the Spanish author Luis Goytisolo. My study is grounded in the corpus linguistics tradition. First I analyze the novel through a keyword analysis. This reveals that some words, like "sexo", "coño", "culo", "penetración", and "homosexual", are unexpectedly high in frequency in the text. Second I look at a plot of them, which shows that the topic of sex is the least common in the first volume of the tetralogy. That can be explained by the fact that "Recuento" narrates the childhood and youth of the protagonist, where sexual activity is alledgedly less frequent. Third I analyze the concordances of those keywords. What they reveal is a series of ideologies about sexuality underlying the novel. Those include heteronormativity, the war of the sexes, the dominance of men over women, size matters, and the deviant queer. All in all, the idea of sexuality that the narrator conveys in the novel is tied to the principles of Franco’s regime at the time. Only a few glimpses of the sexual opening of the democratic period are reflected in the text. These are subversive and reactionary, as with the idea that women objectify men in response to their previous objectification. Antagonía represents its status as a "transitional" novel through its usage of language about sexuality.

Fredag 20 okt., 13:45-15:25


Tove Bull, Anna-Ritta Lindgren & Leena Huss: Language shift and language (re)vitalisation – the roles played by women and men (13:45-14:15)

This paper has its point of departure in Northern Scandinavia where speakers of Sámi, Finnic and Scandinavian languages have shared their habitats for hundreds of years. However, while the Finnish, Swedish and Norwegian speaking people have increased their settlement areas the Sámi speaking people have been forced to reduce theirs, primarily due to a harsh assimilation policy from the mid 1800s. A language shift has taken place from Sámi to the national official languages, but also from other minority Finnic languages, such as Kven (to Norwegian) and Meänkieli (to Swedish). However, during the last decades a change in official language policy has taken place in all three countries, Finland, Sweden and Norway, a change where (re)vitalisation of the threatened languages is high on the agenda.

In our talk we will concentrate on potential gendered linguistic patterns in the development that has taken place, according to the following sketch:

  1. Pre-modernity, non-assimilation period: Minority women were primarily monolingual in the minority languages; minority men in general had more access to bi- or multilingualism.
  2. Modernity, assimilation: Women seem to accept the language shift quicker than men and are instrumental to introduce the majority language into the families.
  3. Ethnic renaissance and (re)vitalisation: More women than men are active in trying to reverse the language shift process, and function as active (re)visalisators. 

We will discuss potential reasons for this underlying developmental pattern and also ask whether or not this gendered pattern can be generalised to language shifts and reversals of language shifts in other multilingual societies.

Auli Hakulinen & Lea Laitinen: The Dream of a Common Language (14:20-14:50)

In the 19th century, several activist women in Finland began to take part in the development of the standard language. Among them, there were women, who had been educated in Swedish, and self-taught peasant women, whose mother tongue was one of the spoken dialects. None of them had access to higher, university education.

Hundred years later, the new women’s movement instigated university students and teachers across humanistic and social disciplines to study the position of women in language, culture and society. The development of women’s studies gave birth to research especially in linguistics, history, literary studies and philosophy.  In our talk, we are going to give a closer look at the rise and fall of feminist linguistics within 1984-94. In that period, we experienced a real boom of research. We also felt the need to find a common language for Finnish women at large. However, we were unable to take further the theoretical thinking - for reasons that we are going to discuss further.

Today, we are in a new situation in the society. Thousands of women, speaking hundreds of languages, have come to the Nordic countries as asylum seekers. The concept of ‘common language’ will now necessarily get new interpretations. We would like to raise the question of how as women and linguists we can address this contemporary challenge

Katrín Harðardóttir: The inclusive Bible translation (14:55-15:25) 

Ten years have passed since the publication of the new bible translation that was named The Bible of the 21. century. As the name suggests, the goal of the translation was to bring the texts of the Bible closer to modern speakers - the language was intended to be inclusive. Thus the translation committee received instructions on how to translate and actualize the texts, while always bearing in mind not to stray far from the original Greek text. Mainly two aspects were to be reconsidered; the ambiguity of the word ‘man’, and changing male words into neutral words, if applied. The debates regarding these instructions followed suit, theorists and grammarians exchanged views in newspapers and professional journals, drawing on arguments based on grammar, translation theory and feminist theory. In spite of new translation theories that were named as one of the incentives for the project, what characterized these debates was a simplification of translation processes and different positions towards the role and authority of language. The debates may shed light on the main conflict lines which touch upon language reform in Iceland and possibly account for underlying prejudices towards language change.


Gyða Margrét Pétursdóttir & Silja Bára Ómarsdóttir: Trump – discourse and masculinity capital (13:45-14:15)

Kyngervi og vald er samtvinnað. Almennt eru karlar taldir eiga auðveldari aðgang að valdinu en konur kyngervis síns vegna. Orðræðan er valdatæki og beiting hennar getur aukið vald eða dregið úr því. Í erindinu verður skoðað hvernig Trump Bandaríkjaforseti, einn af valdamestu körlum heims, og fylgismenn hans beittu orðræðunni í aðdraganda forsetakosninga í Bandaríkjunum 2016 til að safna karlmennskuauðmagni (e. masculinity capital) fyrir hönd Trump. Karlmennskuauðmagni er safnað annars vegar með því að vísa í ríkjandi karlmennskuhugmyndir (e. dominant masculinity) og hinsvegar með því að vísa í ráðandi karlmennnskuhugmyndir (e. hegemonic masculinity). Þegar vísað er í ríkjandi karlmennskuhugmyndir þá er karlmennskuauðmagni safnað með vísan í eignleika sem í sögulegu og menningarlegu samhengi eru tengdir körlum frekar en konum. Með vísan í ráðandi karlmennskuhugmyndir þá er meintur aðstæðingur kvengerður (aftur með vísan í menningarlegt og sögulegt samhengi) með það að markmiði að raða viðkomandi neðar í stigveldi karlmennskunnar og þeim sem auðmagnið hlýtur ofar í stigveldinu. Erindið byggir á greiningu á kappræðum forsetaframbjóðenda Repúblikana fyrir kosningarnar 2016 og ræðum á landsfundi Repúblikana sama ár. Greiningin byggir á tvenns konar aðferðum. Í fyrsta lagi innihaldsgreiningu til að flokka gögnin og þemagreina og í öðru lagi gagnrýninni orðræðugreiningu í anda Foucault til þess að fanga enn frekar undirliggjandi merkingu og markmið orðræðunnar, þ.e. hvort beitt er ríkjandi eða ráðandi karlmennskuhugmyndum. Bráðabirgðaniðurstöður sýna að Trump og fylgismenn hans beittu í meira mæli ráðandi en ríkjandi karlmennskuhugmyndum og á það við hvort sem andstæðingarnir koma úr Repúblikanaflokknum eða Demókrataflokknum, sem dæmi þegar Trump vísaði til Jeb Bush með orðunum „lítil orka“ (e. low energy) þá er hann, byggt á þessum kenningaramma, að kvengera Bush þar sem í sögulegu og menningarlegu samhengi þá hafa konur verið álitnar orkuminni en karlar. Með þessu aukna karlmennskuauðmagni raðast síðan Trump ofar í stigveldi karlmennskunnar á kostnað Bush.

Gunilla Byrman & Astrid Skoglund: Genusmedvetet språk i svenska brottmålsdomar? (14:20-14:50)

Det svenska Domstolsverket har bett oss att genuskritiskt granska och analysera skrivna brottmålsdomar. Syftet är att analysera språket i domarna utifrån ett genusperspektiv för att kartlägga om det finns skillnader mellan hur kvinnor och män omskrivs i domar. Tanken är att analysen ska kunna medvetandegöra skribenterna om skrivningar som inte är genusmedvetna. Materialet består av 21 brottmålsdomar. Följande forskningsfrågor ska besvaras: Hur omskrivs kvinnor och män i domarna? Vilka variabler påverkar hur genus språkligt konstrueras? Projektet har en genuskritisk design med utgångspunkt i kritisk diskursanalys (Fairclough 2010) som kombineras med genusanalys, där genus är en social konstruktion av kvinnors och mäns könsidentiteter. Analysen är främst inriktad på jämställdhet mellan kvinnor och män, men även variabler som ålder, utbildning, etnisk bakgrund och andra relevanta variabler beaktas. Det intersektionella perspektivet är ett analytiskt verktyg för att studera hur diskriminerande maktordningar i samhället samverkar (jfr Crenshaw 2008, de los Reyes & Mulinari 2005). Målet för domstolarna är att göra domskrivningar mer jämlika för att öka rättssäkerheten för alla som ställs inför rätta i Sverige. Språket i domar ska vara jämställt och användas utifrån en medvetenhet om betydelsen av ordval och uttryckssätt. I föredraget kommer vi att redovisa resultatet av studien.

Klaus Geyer: Gender-relatered hate speech i brugerkommentarer på danske medie-websiter (14:55-15:25)

Hadetale, forstået i en bred bemærkelse som brug af udtryk til nedsættelse og fornærmelse af visse befolkningsgrupper (jf. Meibauer 2013: 1), udgør et problematisk sprogligt fænomen, som i stigende grad diskuteres i samfundet. Især anvendelsen af den elektronisk formidlede kommunikations kanaler og den tilhørende (formentlige) anonymitet synes at fremme en ”rå tone”, som ville næppe blive brugt i personlig kommunikation face-to-face. Den præsenterede undersøgelse baserer på et korpus af brugerkommentarer til artikler på danske mediers websider. Korpuset samledes i rammen af det EU-støttede projektet C.O.N.T.A.C.T. (2015-2017, se http://reportinghate.eu). Ulovlig hhv. strafbar hadetale og især specielle krænkende skældsord findes der ikke, hvilket næppe overrasker: Mediernes online-kommentarsider bliver modereret, så at den type hadkommentarer som regel hurtigt slettes. Det kan dog i betydelig omfang observeres mere indirekte former af hadetale i den indledningsvis nævnte mening. Selvom den største del af hadkommentarerne i korpuset er xeno- eller islamofobisk, findes der også i betragtelig omfang gender-relateret hadetale som udtrykker homofobi, misogyni osv. I mit foredrag bruges Culpeper og Haughs integrative pragmatik (jf. Culpeper / Haugh 2014) som teoretisk udgangspunkt for at undersøge på grundlag af udvalgte eksempler, hvilke mønstre og midler anvendes in den type online-kommentarer for at udtrykke gender-relateret nedsættelse og fornærmelse. Der skitseres første trin på vej til et analyseinstrumentarium baseret på sproglige konstruktioner (eller formuleringsmønstre), som kan gøre det nemmere at identificere hadetale udover specielle krænkende skældsord i online-brugerkommentarer samt andre tekster.

Saturday 21. Oct., 10:15-11:55 


Jaap van Marle: The use of neutral personal names with reference to women (10:15-10:45)

In the majority of the dialects spoken in the south-eastern part of the Netherlands, it is quite common to use neutral personal pronouns with reference to women. Like the other Dutch (and German) dialects, these dialects had a specific set of female personal pronouns: in the nominative zeej (with emphasis) and ze (without emphasis). In the dialects at issue, these female personal pronouns still exist. However, in these dialects these forms are no longer the only means to refer to women. In addition, one may also use the neuter personal names: het (with emphasis) and ‘t (without emphasis). In this presentation emphasis will be on the use of both set of personal pronouns used with reference to women. Generally speaking, there can be no doubt as to the overall difference between both sets of forms. The female forms zeej and ze are linked to notions such as ‘formality’ and ‘respect’, whereas the neutral ones het and ’t represent the ‘informal’ pattern. Interestingly, however, it turns out that there are all kinds of differences between speakers as to the way these two sets of forms are actually used. This large-scale variation in the use of both patterns appears to be primarily linked to the following two forces: (1) the fact that the use of neutral personal names with reference to women represents a pattern which, in terms of the standard language, is completely unacceptable, and (2) the historical base of this pattern – the use of the neutral article het in combination with female proper names, i.e. het Jules ‘Julia’) – has faded into the background.

Anna Lindqvist & Emma Bäck: ´Hen´ might reduce the male bias in the Swedish language (10:50-11:20)

In Swedish, the gender-neutral third-person singular pronoun ‘hen’ has been introduced, existing parallel with the two pronouns representing ‘she’ and ‘he’. One argument against the use of hen, is that there already exist gender neutral words in the Swedish language – hence no new words are needed, it is argued. However, earlier research on assumed gender-neutral words have identified a strong male bias, meaning that so-called neutral words are not perceived as neutral, but associated with masculinity. We examine if ‘hen’ more effectively can reduce the male bias, compared to other grammatically gender-neutral, and historically older, Swedish words. In one social psychological experiment, framed as a recruitment study, the 276 participants read about a job candidate applying for a gender-neutral position (in terms of gender distribution) as real-estate agent. The candidate was referred to as one of four gender-neutral words: ‘the applicant’ (den sökande), ‘the person’ (personen), the new gender-neutral third-person pronoun singular ‘hen’, or the impersonal pronoun singular ‘it’ (den; sometimes used as a gender-neutral personal pronoun). When having read the description, the participants were asked to choose what photo they believed showed the candidate, from four choices (two women and two men). Results show that ‘hen’ was the only condition not affected by a male bias: Most participants associated ‘the applicant’ (68 %), ‘the person’ (71 %) and ‘den’ (63 %) with a masculine gender, compared to the participants reading about ‘hen’ (52%). In sum, ‘hen’ seems to be genuinely gender neutral, compared to other “neutral” paraphrases, and could thereby be used to reduce gender bias in language.

Marc Tang: Sociocultural gender in nominal classification (11:25-11:55)

We demonstrate how sociocultural gender is reflected in functions of nominal classification systems across languages. Besides biological gender, sociocultural gender is also represented through language (Eckert & McConnell-Ginet, 2003; Hall & Donovan, 1996; Hellinger & Motschenbacher, 2015). While previous studies focused on discourse analysis, we approach this topic via nominal classification, i.e. how languages classify nouns of their lexicon (Seifart, 2010, p. 719). Within languages of the world, the most common system of nominal classification is grammatical gender (Corbett, 1991). Grammatical genders are typically (but not only) found in Indo-European languages, e.g. French with masculine and feminine. As a case study, we selected three languages with grammatical genders. They are respectively Khasi (Khasian), Hindi (Indo-Iranian) and Swedish (Germanic). We adopt a functional approach (Contini-Morava & Kilarski, 2013) and demonstrate that these grammatical gender systems do share common tendencies dependent on human cognition and perception, e.g. associating long, thin, vertical objects to masculine grammatical gender whereas round, flat, horizontal ones are associated to feminine grammatical gender (Kemmerer, 2017, p. 408). However, grammatical genders also return sociocultural values of language speakers in different forms. As an example, in Hindi which has a patrilineal kinship system, objects of large size are affiliated to the masculine gender (Contini-Morava & Kilarski, 2013, p. 271). In Khasian languages, large sized objects tend to be associated instead with feminine gender. This reflects the sociocultural values of the Khasian people, whose kinship system is matrilineal. The centrality of specific biological genders is thus reflected in the grammatical gender system of different languages. A comparison with Swedish is also included, as Swedish genders combined masculine and feminine into uter, in opposition to neuter (Andersson, 2000, p. 552).


Tiina Räisä: Sequential and discursive construction of gender – ritualized media contexts and the manifestation of consensus (10:15-10:45)

In the ideal world gender could be classified as a vivid symbol of freedom of the self; a representation of empowerment that manifests itself, and is signified by, the social and ideological recognition for numerous groups in society. The gender debate appears to enable varied forms of being, entitling individuals to self-expressive patterns to live by. 

I analyse gender from a diametrically opposite perspective in order to underline the quite different practices by which it is constructed in a mass media context.

The media ritual lucia in the main Swedish newspaper in Finland, Hufvudstadsbladet, (Räisä 2016), underlines a sequential and diachronic text production and editorial logic. Highlighting the social context enhances the discursive understanding of the body as an institutional fantasy that is used as racial manifestations, embedded in nationalistic functions (Bloch 2013).

The sequential production and analysis of language demonstrates ”how media does gender”. A ritualized persona is not ambiguous and multifaceted, a true human being, but on the opposite, a construction of cultural and ideological consensus, lacking every form of conflict. Medium and the audience alike embrace not the many, but the very few and specific representations of gender (Bell 2009, Butler 2007). Gender and bodies are wrapped up in tight packages, envisaging the social force named ritual: idealized presentations that become almost impossible to attack or even question (Butler 1997).

I will move on to describe the features of a sequential text production, focusing on the methodological questions related to discourse analysis as a shared, written and visual practices. Besides being signified by a fixed set of naming procedures and verb categories underlining the “existential borders”, there appears to be more structural qualities related to the formatted and mediated ways of being.    

Hannes Fromm & Margit Reitbauer: Sensitive New Age Guys and Angry White Men Representations of Modern Day Masculinities in English-Speaking News Media (10:50-11:20)

In the wake of populist political tremors, the refugee crisis and rapid social change, this research project sheds light on how masculinity is being talked about in modern-day news discourse. An extensive corpus analysis covering 15 English and Northern American newspapers and some of their online outlets forms the basis of this research. News texts on masculinity as well as on topics related to discourses on masculinity from 2014, 2015 and 2016 extracted from the online news databases LexisNexis and FACTIVA comprise our corpus. The text-mining software WordSmith is used to analyse linguistic strategies in the representation of men in these texts as well as the prevalence of related topics and discursive events. In a second step a qualitative discourse analysis will be conducted. Texts will be selected from the corpus based on their relevance for the meta-discourse on masculinity as well as their exemplarity for phenomena that become visible in the corpus analysis. In the qualitative analysis we investigate some of the strategies of representing men in more detail. This serves to uncover cultural narratives behind buzzwords such as ‘angry white men’ or ‘refugee men’. Our findings will be related to feminist sexual politics as well as the concept of hegemonic masculinity (cf. Connell 1995; Wetherell & Edley 1999; Speer 2015; etc.). The research aims at the core of this study are to assess in which relation modern-day masculinities stand to traditional, hegemonic masculinity and how they are evaluated and framed in news discourse. To assess the potential of a cross-disciplinary approach we would like to discuss the inclusion of literary interpretation in a critical discourse analysis on gender topics. We will conclude with a brief outlook on the possible combination of literary studies and linguistics in this area of research.

Jonita Siivonen: Invertering som arbetsmetod för en mer genusmedveten journalistisk personpresentation (11:25-11:55)

Den här pilotstudien undersöker hur genusstereotypiserande praktiker kan ta sig uttryck i journalistisk personbeskrivning. Avsikten med studien är pragmatisk. Studien vill identifiera sekvenser där alternativa beskrivningar till genusbundna binära genuskonstruktioner hade varit möjliga. Syftet är att i förlängningen skapa ett verktyg för mer genussensitiv personjournalistik. Journalistiska texter om personer konstruerar genus dels i det explicita personomtalet, dels i beskrivningar av personen, av hens verksamhet och i det som presenteras som citat. Det introducerande personomtalet är standardiserat till verksamhetstitel (eller yrke eller titel), förnamn och efternamn (Siivonen 2011). Däremot är frihetsgraderna för resten av personkonstruktionen stora, särskilt i relativt fria genrer som till exempel personporträtt (Siivonen 2007). Sekvenser av personbeskrivning, av beskrivningen av personens verksamhet liksom valet av och redigeringen av personcitat ger ofta uttryck för binära genusstereotyper. Det här beror bland annat på att journalistiken långt styrs av konventioner. Materialet består av fyra personporträtt ur tidningarna Dagens Nyheter, Iltalehti och Me Naiset. För att fånga upp de konventioner och mallar som kan ge upphov till genusbundna stereotypiserande sekvenser, kommer studien att identifiera textsekvenser som är bundna till (binär) femininitet och maskulinitet. Eventuellt kan invertering som metod skapa en utväg för journalistiken att finna rutiner för mer genusmångfald i sina personbeskrivningar. Med invertering avses här att ”kasta om” beskrivningar av binära kvinnor och binära män – är till exempel en personbeskrivning av en kvinna möjlig att överföra på en beskrivning av en man?


Daniel Wojahn: Motsägelser i synen på sambandet mellan språk och verklighet i offentliga diskussioner om feministiska språkförändringar (10:15-10:45) 

Motsägelser i synen på sambandet mellan språk och verklighet i offentliga diskussioner om feministiska språkförändringar I offentliga diskussioner om feministiska språkförändringar aktualiseras så gott som alltid resonemang om sambandet mellan språk och samhälleliga strukturer. Min presentation bygger på en analys av offentliga svenska diskussioner om feministiska språkförändringar som fördes mellan 1960-talet och fram t.o.m 2017. De analyserade diskussionerna berör kön och sexualitet och handlar om förändrade och nybildade personbenämningar (t.ex. yrkesbenämningar och pronomen). Diskussionerna präglas av intressanta och i sig motsägelsefulla grundantaganden som synliggör komplexiteten i synen på förhållandet mellan språklig och icke-språklig verklighet bland människor utanför det lingvistiska forskningsfältet. Jag analyserar exempel som hämtats från två olika kontexter: dels feministiska grupper som initierar språkförändringarna, dels diskussionstrådar på internet, där kommentatorer re_agerar negativt på politiskt motiverade språkförändringar. Med utgångspunkt i en feministisk och kritisk diskursanalytisk ansats undersöker jag hur sambandet mellan språkliga förändringar och förändringar i den icke-språkliga, sociala verkligheten diskuteras i dessa två kontexter. Förenklat uttryckt förekommer två olika synsätt i materialet. Medan diskussionerna i de feministiska grupperna i stort sett grundar sig på en konstruktivistisk språksyn, där språkförändringar antas kunna leda till förändringar i den icke-språkliga världen, utgår kommentatorerna i diskussionstrådarna i sina negativa re_aktioner från en referentiell språksyn, där språk antas passivt spegla ”verkligheten”. De två grupperna motsäger alltså varandra på denna punkt, men även inom respektive parters argumentationskedjor existerar intressanta motsägelser. Till exempel uttrycker de flesta skribenter i kommentarsfälten att de uppfattar kön som något biologiskt, statiskt och binärt. Samtidigt varnas dock för att språkförändringar, som exempelvis spridningen av det icke-könsspecificerande pronomenet hen, kan förändra befintliga könsnormer och leda till ”könsförvirring”. Det befaras att mänskliga kroppar blir till ett icke-könat ”hopkok” eller ”en och samma soppa” och att ”visuella” och ”kroppsliga” könsskillnader ”sablas ner” när icke-könsspecificerande former sprider sig. Kön uppfattas således vara något medfött och oföränderligt, samtidigt som det beskrivs som något diskursivt konstruerat och flexibelt som kan omförhandlas med hjälp av språket.

Lena Lind Palicki: Feministiska tidskrifter som politisk arena(10:50-11:20)

I projektet Feministiska tidskrifter som politisk arena är fokus på hur feminister använt tidskriftsmediet för att ta plats i offentligheten och bli till som feministiska subjekt. Med nedslag i den första, andra och tredje vågens feministiska rörelse har vi undersökt hur feminister konstruerats i tidskrifter över tid men också hur de har använt språket som verktyg för att åstadkomma förändring. Resultatet visar att i den första vågen används den kvinnliga rösträttsrörelsens tidskrifter framför allt för att skriva fram en kommunikativt skicklig och aktiv feministisk identitet i tidskrifter som Hertha och Morgonbris (Milles kommande). I den andra vågen undersöker vi hur Grupp 8 använder språket för att skriva fram och synliggöra kvinnliga subjekt bland annat genom att använda feminina böjningsformer och genom språkliga verktyg synliggöra patriarkala strukturer (Lind Palicki & Milles 2015). I den tredje vågen möjliggör den nya informationsteknologin för feminister att skapa sig egna kanaler för att kommentera sin samtid, konstruera kritik och sprida sitt budskap. De så kallade mediefeministerna blir ett begrepp och feministiska fanzines som Bleck och tidskrifter som Darling tjänar som exempel i analysen av hur tidskrifterna fungerar som förhandlingsarenor för feministisk kritik (Lind Palicki 2017, Lind Palicki u.u.). Tidskriftsmediet har således på olika sätt ofta varit en viktig arena för den feministiska rörelsen. I detta föredrag kommer vi att sammanfatta projektets olika delar och göra jämförelser mellan de olika tiderna, men också peka framåt och göra jämförelser med vår tid

Aron Arnold: Gender Ideologies and the construction of scientific knowledges in Phonetic sciences (11:25-11:55)

This paper exposes how knowledge construction in phonetic sciences is influenced by gender ideologies. The idea that the production of knowledge is a neutral act is deconstructed and it is instead demonstrated that scientific knowledges are situated knowledges that are shaped by specific assumptions about gender. In the phonetic literature, the body is omnipresent. In descriptions of how human sounds are produced, the body of the speaker is regularly represented by a male body. For example, the human vocal tract is regularly presented as having a length of 17 or 17,5 cm. But this length is not an average of human vocal tracts but an average of male vocal tracts measured in early studies. The consequence of the confusion between human and male is that the male body becomes the norm, and the female body becomes specific, marked, and eventually pathologized. This, for instance, is the case in the literature about Premenstrual Vocal Syndrome, where different physiological phenomena accompanying the female cyclicity are being described as “symptoms” of a “syndrome”. Gender binarism is the third analysed ideology. Phonetic literature produces the idea of binary gender by the way research questions and hypotheses are formulated and by the way experimental protocols are designed. For example, in phonetic texts, the expression “opposite gender/sex” appears regularly, and the human vocal apparatus is systematically described as sexually dimorphic.

Lördag 21 okt., 13:00-14:40


Sarah Harchaoui: Language practices in superdiverse Oslo - A staging of masculinity? (13:00-13:30)

Since the late 1990s, a great deal of interest has been observed within sociolinguistics concerning linguistic practices or styles occurring in culturally and linguistically urban areas in Scandinavia (Svendsen, 2014 :5). The Oslo case study is, in this regard, particularly interesting to analyse in demographic terms since Oslo represents the fastest growing city in Europe where much of the country’s growth is due to immigration (Urban Europe 2014). As a part of my research, most of my data come from the UPUS-project (‘Linguistic Development in Urban Environments’) conducted between 2006 and 2008 in Oslo, Norway. The corpus consists of video-recorded interviews and peer-group conversational data from adolescents all born and raised in the Eastern parts of Oslo, which are mainly made up of third world immigrants and their descendants (respectively 34% and 44% in 2008). According to the results of UPUS’s initial works (Svendsen & Røyneland 2008 ; Quist & Svendsen 2010 ; Nortier & Svendsen 2015), a specific way of speaking Norwegian labelled as ‘Norwegian multiethnolectal style’, ‘Kebab-Norwegian’ or recently ‘Contemporary Urban Vernacular’ has been confirmed and accurately located in the Eastern parts of Oslo. Non-European borrowing and innovative verb placement are features which are regularly put forward to describe this speech style (Opsahl & Nistov, 2010). So far, researchers’ attention has mainly been focused on age and ethnic criteria in order to explain the use of heterogeneous units but also to deconstruct a cause-effect pattern. Nevertheless, it seems clear that a one-by-one relation can be made between the activation of Norwegian multiethnolectal style and a masculine staging of practices. Most of the respondents have expressed their affiliation with hip hop movement inherited from American street culture, which price masculine attitudes in daily lifestyle. The purpose of my talk is thus to discuss the social meanings of those language practices in the light of the gender criterion. Is the Norwegian multiethnolectal style restricted to male respondents ? What makes this so-called ‘masculine’ speech style attractive for the speakers of superdiverse areas not only in Oslo but in the whole Europe ?

Julie Bardet: Playing with gendered toys in 3-year-olds: What do we learn from parent-child interactions ? (13:35-14:05)

If gender can overlap with sexual identity, it also results from a culture, which varies in space and time, and overpasses the male/female binarity. Social construction of gender is shaped by social representations, norms and stereotypes, wich are conveyed through language and non verbal behaviour. During primary socialisation by parents, children develop knowledge about gender normative representations. In the present study we are interested in conscioulsy and unconsciously displaying of gender stereotypes in language and non verbal behaviour in parent-child interactions (Santrock, 1994; Peretti & Sydney, 1984), with specific concern for three-year-olds children. Our study is conducted in France, where recent public actions have been carried out against gender stereotypes. We conducted a field study and we observed parent-child interaction in a context challenging attitudes towards gender stereotypes (Caldera et al., 1989). Free playing sessions were organized at home, involving 27 three-year-olds French speaking children (13 girls and 14 boys) and their two parents. Each child was videotaped during two playing sessions (with the mother and with the father). The participants were proposed to play with gendered toys (Blakemore & Centers, 2005): 1/male oriented: a garage ; 2/female oriented: a doll house ; 3/neutral: pieces for creating animals. We ask the following questions : « How do parental discourse and non verbal behaviour convey gender stereotypes ? » ; « How do children language and behaviour traduce gender representations ?». Both verbal and non-verbal (pointing a toy, playing with a toy) cues were collected. In verbal interactions we looked especially at gender assignements (as « Boys don't play with dolls ») ; the way toys are qualified (for example, the frequency of words related to appearence to qualify dolls) and compared word occurrences referring to female/male oriented toys (helicopter/doll) in girls and boys as well as in mothers/fathers.

Jaana Kolu: Translanguaging hos tvåspråkiga flickor och pojkar i Haparanda, Stockholm och Helsingfors (14:10-14:40)

Föreliggande bidrag redogör för tvåspråkiga (finska/svenska) pojkars och flickors användning av språkliga resurser (translanguaging) och socialt konstruerade drag i kommunikationspraktiker under vardaglig interaktion i Haparanda, Stockholm och Helsingfors. Syftet med studien är att utreda hur flickor och pojkar använder sina språkresurser i enkönade grupper respektive blandade grupper. Använder flickor och pojkar sina språkresurser olika? Har de olika kommunikationsstilar beträffande språkresurserna? Materialet som ligger till grund för denna undersökning utgörs av inspelade par- och gruppsamtal mellan tvåspråkiga 13–15-åriga ungdomar utförda under 2014–2017 samt kompletterande skriftliga enkäter om deras språkliga bakgrund. I och med att våra samhällen och därmed även våra skolmiljöer i Norden blivit och blir allt mer flerspråkiga och mångkulturella är en undersökning om ungdomarnas kommunikationsstilar i flerspråkiga skolmiljöer ett angeläget ämne som är värt att uppmärksammas mer än vad som hittills varit fallet. Detta bidrag är ett led i att öka kunskapen om två- och flerspråkiga ungdomars kommunikationsstilar och användning av språkresurser utanför klassrum och lektioner.


Malena Gustavson: Touching and difference (13:00-13:30)

What language is touch? Does it have particular grammars, or is it universal? Do we always understand the intention of a brush, a stroke, a pinch? I want to understand the language of touch, how it produces and reproduces meaning and how it produces and reproduces, or transform social relations and power relations. An overarching question I have worked with in my research is What does touches do? How can touch be understood? My main material is an ethnographic material on sexual narratives and how touch could be both intentional, misconceived and surprising, often entangled in a blurred sense of sexuality, gender, desire and ethics. I will discuss the significance of touch in sexuality, how it reproduce, or change the meaning of sexual activities. Moreover, how are different bodies organised in the grammar of sensorial practices; who can be touched and by whom? And how does this vary in different contexts? How can we analytically separate between the communication and the intentionality of touch?

Ann-Christin Torpsten & Mattias Lundin: Policy documents to counteract discrimination and degrading treatment in schools (13:35-14:05) 

In Sweden the anti-discrimination initiatives and the efforts against degrading treatment are promoted by two laws (SFS, 2008:567; SFS 2010:800). Our aim is to explore and understand the self-regulatory efforts to prevent discrimination and degrading treatment in school. We examine Swedish school equity plans asking what the causes of discrimination and degrading treatment within the schools are and what solutions emerge and which subject positions are constructed and made possible? Documents from all compulsory schools in six municipalities are collected. In a discourse analysis we focus on how the phenomenon is expressed. We constructed a definition of a problem and or each problem we search for possible subject positions. At a first stage, various recurring ideas were found in the texts. These were gathered with respect to their expressions of degrading treatment and discrimination in their own educational setting. To uncover the ways of understanding the reasons for the occurring school problems, we searched for solutions that are related to the school problems presented. As a second step, we addressed the identified discourses to find out what subject positions are made possible. The analysis has rendered three discourses. The perfect school discourse – rejects the occurrence of degrading treatment and discrimination. Everybody feels safe and there are no needs for solutions. In this perfect school the only subject position is the perfect student. In The designated discourse, non-complying students cause problems and the solution is to educate these students. In this discourse there are two subject positions, the non-complier and the functioning student. In The educational discourse, problems are dominant norms that provide inequalities and the solutions are questioning and criticizing norms, taking care of each other’s and self-reflection. In this discourse there is one subject position, the active fellow.

Evelyn Hayn: Using ´accidental´ life stories to investigate name discrimination (14:10-14:40) 

In Western societies, personal names are usually negotiated as indicators for a person’s gender and (often nationalized) origin. When I started to investigate the discriminatory presuppositions, assumptions and perceptions of these categorizing negotiations, I often experienced that people interested in my research approached me with a story about name discrimination. What intrigued me most was the fact that apparently everyone could relate to the topic, be it as a person that experienced name discrimination themselves or as someone that identified certain personal names as ‘disadvantageous’. Given that personal names, indeed, play a crucial role in everyday life as they serve to distinguish people from one another, I started to wonder how I could integrate life narrations in my research, specifically, as they seem to provide immediate access to my research questions. Various feminist researchers such as Halleh Ghorashi have employed life stories as a method in order to bring “reflective positioning [...] into practice”. The stories I learnt about depicted incidents of - (un)conscious favoritism of people with ‘German’ and ‘Swedish’ names on the housing and job markets, - denial of retraumatization caused by historic names that symbolize genocide, - unintelligibility of names that interpellate gender-non-conformity, - empowerment, emancipation and community building through name change. By analyzing these ‘accidental’ stories, structural discrimination became “accessible as a practice that is experienced by individuals but shared collectively”. Furthermore, subversive examples of life narrations provided me as a researcher with an approach to critically evaluate my own life stories in which I experienced privilege. With the paper I aim to discuss some theoretical and methodological reflections and principles that identify ‘accidental’ life stories as an approach to analyze the perception of personal names and investigate name discrimination.

„Kynsegin íslenska“: Icelandic seminar

Lördag 21 okt., 13:00-14:40


Alda Villiljós:„Hán er vin mitt“: nýjar víddir í íslensku hvorugkyni (13:00-13:25)

Á síðustu árum hefur kynsegin fólk rutt sér rúms í þjóðfélaginu og meðal annars kynnt ný orð og málnotkun sem hefur ekki þekkst áður í íslensku. Á sama tíma hefur orðið vitundarvakning á meðal femínista á Íslandi og víðar um málvenjuna þar sem karlkyn er notað á ókyngreindan hátt, sbr. starfstitla í karlkyni, karllægt tungumál burtséð frá kyni þeirra sem talað er um o.s.frv. Þessir tveir hópar hafa opnað fyrir mikilvæga umræðu um hvernig notkun kynjaðra orða getur haft áhrif á ákveðna hópa samfélagsins og hvernig orðanotkun getur útilokað og útskúfað. 

María Helga Guðmundsdóttir: Samastaður í tungumálinu: réttindabarátta hinsegin fólks á vettvangi íslenskunnar (13:25-13:50)

Hvers vegna er tungutak og orðanotkun svo oft í brennidepli í mannréttindamálum? Hvert er mikilvægi þess að eiga samastað í eigin tungumáli? Í tilveru jaðarsettra samfélagshópa sannast mýmargar klisjur um mátt tungumálsins. Hugtök og málvenjur eru notaðar – meðvitað og ómeðvitað – til að útskúfa, rægja, niðurlægja og jafnvel þaga tilvist ákveðinna persónueinkenna í hel. Að sama skapi getur málnotkun sýnt virðingu og samstöðu, veitt öryggi og verið öflugt verkfæri gegn fordómum og staðalímyndum. Viðleitni jaðarsettra hópa til að breyta málvenjum gegnir lykilhlutverki í því að þróa samfélagsleg viðhorf til betri vegar og getur einnig haft mikla málfarslega nýsköpun í för með sér. Í erindinu verður barátta hinsegin fólks á vettvangi íslenskunnar skoðuð út frá sjónarhóli aktivista, en hún hefur undanfarið teygt anga sína inn á óvænt svið, t.d. með smíði nýrra persónufornafna.

Þorbjörg Þorvaldsdóttir: Hvað með ‘það’? Persónufornafnið sem hentar ekki þegar vísað er í fólk (13:50-14:15)

Undanfarin ár hefur farið fram umræða um þörfina á nýju persónufornafni til þess að nota um fólk sem stendur utan kynjatvíhyggjunnar. Í þessu sambandi hefur fornafnið hán náð hvað mestri útbreiðslu í málsamfélaginu, en það tekur með sér lýsingarorð í hvorugkyni. Oft hefur því verið fleygt fram að engin þörf sé á slíku fornafni, þar sem íslenska búi nú þegar yfir persónufornafni í hvorugkyni: það. Fyrir liggur þó að það er tilfinning margra að fornafnið það hafi niðrandi merkingarauka. Þessi tilfinning á sér ekki síst rætur í hlutverki hvorugkynsins í íslensku og þá sérstaklega hvorugkyns persónufornafnins. Í þessu erindi verður farið yfir þessi hlutverk og rök færð fyrir því af hverju það er óheppilegt fornafn þegar vísað er í fólk. 

Eiríkur Rögnvaldsson: Má gera kynusla í íslenskunni? (14:15-14:40)

Í íslensku er karlkyn venjulega talið hlutlaust eða „ómarkað“ kyn og er iðulega notað til að vísa til bæði karla og kvenna. Kvenkyn er hins vegar ekki hægt að nota þegar vísað er til blandaðs hóps. Í erindinu fer ég yfir sögulegar ástæður þessa munar og ræði hvort og þá hvernig þetta sé að breytast, og fjalla um notkun hvorugkyns sem ómarkaðs kyns. Jafnframt skoða ég nýja persónufornafnið hán út frá sjónarmiði málkerfisins og ræði hvort hægt sé að bæta orðum í „lokaðan“ orðflokk eins og persónufornöfn eru venjulega talin. Ég fjalla einnig um hvaða áhrif það hefur í málkerfinu að nota hvorugkyn fornafna og lýsingarorða um fólk og að hverju þarf að hyggja í því sambandi