Gender and age peculiarities of the language and some linguistic difficulties of translation them in practice

Study of lexical and morphological differences of the womens and mens language; grammatical forms of verbs according to the sex of the speaker. Peculiarities of womens and mens language and the linguistic behavior of men and women across languages.

28.01.2014

Children have to learn not only the syntax and sounds of their language, but also the meaning of words. This turns out to be more complicated than some people suppose. For a start, it probably takes some time for children to discover that words can refer to separate things. At first, they probably think that a word such as milk refers to a whole generalized ritual, something uttered as a mug is placed in front of them. Later they, discover that words have meanings which can be applied to individual objects and actions.

At first, children may be able to use words only in a particular context. One child agreed that snow was white, but refused to accept that a piece of paper was also white. This tendency to undergeneralize usually passes unnoticed. But it is probably commoner than over- generalization, which attracts much more attention.

People often remark on children's over-generalizations. Youngsters may call any type of small thing a crumb: a crumb, a small beetle, or a speck of dirt, or they may apply the word moon to any kind of light. An idea popular in the last century was that children see the world through a mental fog. They are able only to grasp broad outlines, which they then narrow down. But this turns out to be an oversimplification, because children's overgeneralizations are often quite specific, and quite odd. One child referred to a shiny green leaf as a moon! A possible explanation is that she was working from a prototype which was unlike the adult's prototype. This child had apparently taken a picture of a shiny yellow crescent moon as a prototypical moon, and re-applied the word moon to anything which had the approximate shape of the original, as well as one of its other characteristics. The leaf was vaguely crescent shaped, and also shiny. This interesting idea is currently being explored by researchers.

For the first time researchers from Northwestern University and the University of Haifa show both that areas of the brain associated with language work harder in girls than in boys during language tasks, and that boys and girls rely on different parts of the brain when performing these tasks

Our findings - which suggest that language processing is more sensory in boys and more abstract in girls - could have major implications for teaching children and even provide support for advocates of single sex classrooms," said Douglas D. Burman, research associate in Northwestern's Roxelyn and Richard Pepper Department of Communication Sciences and Disorders.

Using functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI), the researchers measured brain activity in 31 boys and in 31 girls aged 9 to 15 as they performed spelling and writing language tasks.

The tasks were delivered in two sensory modalities - visual and auditory. When visually presented, the children read certain words without hearing them. Presented in an auditory mode, they heard words aloud but did not see them.

Using a complex statistical model, the researchers accounted for differences associated with age, gender, type of linguistic judgment, performance accuracy and the method - written or spoken - in which words were presented.

The researchers found that girls still showed significantly greater activation in language areas of the brain than boys. The information in the tasks got through to girls' language areas of the brain - areas associated with abstract thinking through language. And their performance accuracy correlated with the degree of activation in some of these language areas.

To their astonishment, however, this was not at all the case for boys. In boys, accurate performance depended - when reading words - on how hard visual areas of the brain worked. In hearing words, boys' performance depended on how hard auditory areas of the brain worked.

If that pattern extends to language processing that occurs in the classroom, it could inform teaching and testing methods.

Given boys' sensory approach, boys might be more effectively evaluated on knowledge gained from lectures via oral tests and on knowledge gained by reading via written tests. For girls, whose language processing appears more abstract in approach, these different testing methods would appear unnecessary.

This could result simply from girls developing faster than boys, in which case the differences between the sexes might disappear by adulthood. Or, an alternative explanation is that boys create visual and auditory associations such that meanings associated with a word are brought to mind simply from seeing or hearing the word.

While the second explanation puts males at a disadvantage in more abstract language function, those kinds of sensory associations may have provided an evolutionary advantage for primitive men whose survival required them to quickly recognize danger-associated sights and sounds.

d) Age-graded language - (old-graded language)

Understanding speech is not the simple matter it appears to be at first sight. Most people assume that comprehension involves being a passive recipient of someone else's message. Hearers, it is often supposed, behave like secretaries taking down a mental dictation. They mentally record the message, then read it back to themselves.

This assumption turns out to be quite wrong. For a start, it is physically impossible to recognize each separate sound, speech is just too fast. Understanding language is an active, not a passive process. Hearers jump to conclusions on the basis of partial information. This has been demonstrated in various experiments. For example, listeners were asked to interpret the following sentences, in which the first sound of the final word was indistinct:

Paint the fence and the ?ate.

Check the calendar and the ?ate.

Here's the fishing gear and the ?ate.

The subjects claimed to hear gate in the first sentence, date in the second, and bait in the third.

Since recognizing words involves quite a lot of guesswork, how do speakers make the guesses? Suppose someone had heard 'She saw a do -'. Would the hearer check through the possible candidates one after the other, dog, doll, don, dock, and so on (serial processing)? Or would all the possibilities be considered subconsciously at the same time (parallel processing)?

The human mind, it appears, prefers the second method, that of parallel processing, so much so that even unlikely possibilities are probably considered subconsciously. A recent interactive activation theory suggests that the mind is an enormously powerful network in which any word which at all resembles the one heard is automatically activated, and that each of these triggers its own neighbours, so that activation gradually spreads like ripples on a pond. Words that seem particularly appropriate get more and more excited, and those which are irrelevant gradually fade away. We now know quite a lot about word recognition. But it is still unclear how separate words are woven together into the overall pattern. To some extent, the process is similar to word recognition, in that people look for outline clues, and then actively reconstruct the probable message from them. In linguistic terminology, hearers utilize perceptual strategies. They jump to conclusions on the basis of outline clues by imposing what they expect to hear onto the stream of sounds. For example, consider the sentence:

The boy kicked the ball threw it.

Most people who hear this sentence feel that there is something wrong with it, that there is a word left out somewhere, and that it would preferably be:

The boy who kicked the ball threw it. The boy kicked the ball, then threw it.

However, they realize that it is in fact perfectly well-formed when shown a similar sentence:

The boy thrown the ball kicked it. (The boy to whom the ball was thrown kicked it).

The problem arose because when interpreting sentences, children tend to impose a subject-verb-object sequence on them. It is hard to counteract this tendency, and accounts for a number of garden-path sentences, situations in which hearers are initially led 'up the garden path' in their interpretation, before realizing they have made a mistake, as in:

Anyone who cooks ducks out of the washing-up.

(Anyone who cooks tries to avoid or ducks out of the washing-up).

In other cases, however, people's interpretation varies depending on the lexical items. In:

Clever girls and boys go to university.

People usually assume that clever refers both to girls and boys. But in:

Small dogs and cats do not need much exercise.

Small is usually taken to refer to the dogs alone.

The relationship between lexical items, the syntax, and the overall context therefore is still under discussion. A further problem is that of gaps, situations in which a word has been brought to the front of the sentence, and left a 'gap' after the verb, as in:

Which wombat did Bill put in the cage?

Do hearers mentally store which wombat until they find the place in the sentence which it slots into (in this case, after the verb put)? Or what happens? This matter is still hotly disputed.

Speech production involves at least two types of process. On the one hand, words have to be selected. On the other, they have to be integrated into the syntax.

Slips of the tongue - cases in which the age-graded speaker accidentally says something such as par cark instead of 'car park' - provide useful clues to these processes, and so do pauses: they can tell us where a speaker stops to think - though it is difficult to separate out pauses caused by searching for lexical items, and pauses due to syntactic planning. Slips of the tongue are part of normal speech. Everybody makes them. There are two main kinds of slips: on the one hand, there are selection errors, cases in which a speaker has picked out the wrong item, as in:

Please hand me the tin-opener (nut-crackers). Your seat's in the third component (compartment).On the other hand, there are assemblage errors, cases in which a correct choice has been made, but the utterance has been wrongly assembled:

Dinner is being served at wine (Wine is being served at dinner).

A poppy of my caper (A copy of my paper).

At first sight, such slips may seem haphazard and confused. On closer inspection, they show certain regularities, so much so that some people have talked about tongue slip 'laws' - though this is something of an exaggeration. We are dealing with recurring probabilities, rather than any real kind of 'law'.

Selection errors usually involve lexical items, so they can tell us which words are closely associated in the mind. For example, people tend to say knives for 'forks', oranges for 'lemons', left for 'right', suggesting that words on the same general level of detail are /tightly linked, especially if they are thought of as a pair. Similar sounding words which get confused tend to have similar beginnings and endings, and a similar rhythm, as in antidote for 'anecdote', confusion for 'conclusion'.

These observations were possibly first made by the two Harvard psychologists who devised a now famous 'tip of the tongue' experiment, first carried out over 25 years ago. The experimenters assembled a number of students and age-graded people, and read them out definitions of relatively uncommon words. For example, 'A navigational instrument used in measuring angular distances, especially the altitude of sun, moon and stars at sea'. Some of the students and age-graded people were unable to write down the word sextant immediately. The word was on the tip of their tongue, but they could not quite remember it. Those in a 'tip of the tongue state' were asked to fill in a questionnaire about their mental search. They found that they could provide quite a lot of information about the elusive word. They could often say how many syllables it had, what the first letter was, and sometimes, how it ended. They could think up similar-meaning words such as astrolabe, compass, and also similar-sounding words such as secant, sexton, sextet. This suggests that adults store and select words partly on the basis of rhythm, partly by remembering how they begin and end.

A considerable number of selection errors tend to be similar both in sound and meaning, as in component for 'compartment', geraniums for 'hydrangeas'. This suggests that an interactive activation theory, of the type proposed for speech recognition, may also be relevant in speech production. The mind activates all similar words, and those that have two kinds of similarity, both meaning and sound, get more highly activated than the others, and so are more likely to pop up in error.

Whereas selection errors tell us how individual words are stored and selected, assemblage errors indicate how whole sequences are organized ready for production. For example, mistakes nearly always take place within a single 'tone group' - a short stretch of speech spoken with a single intonation contour. This suggests that the tone group is the unit of planning. And within the tone group, items with similar stress are often transposed, as in

A gas of tank (a tank of gas).

Furthermore, when sounds are switched, initial sounds change place with other initials, and final with final, and so on, as in

Reap ofhubbish (heap of rubbish).

Hass orgrash (hash or grass).

All this suggests that speech is organized in accordance with a rhythmic principle - that a tone group is divided into smaller units (usually called feet), which are based (in English) on stress. Feet are divided into syllables, which are in turn possibly controlled by a biological 'beat' which regulates the speed of utterance. The interaction between these rhythmically based tone groups and syntactic constructions is a topic which still needs to be carefully examined.

gender language grammatical verb

Chapter 2. Linguistic peculiarities of translation of gender graded languages

2.1 Difficulties of translation of children's speech

The nature of translation is characterized by that psychological structure of the action which adopts to the conditions of performing the action owing frequent experience. The action becomes more frequent, correct and accurate and the number of the operations is shortened while forming the skill the character of awareness of the action is changing, i.e. fullness of understanding is paid to the conditions and quality of performing to the control over it and regulation.

To form some skills is necessary to know that the process of the forming skills has some steps:

- Only some definite elements of the action are automatic.

- The translation occurs under more difficult conditions, when the child can't concentrate his attention on one element of the action.

- The whole structure of the action is improved and the translation of its separate components is completed.

The characteristic feature of the reproductive grammar skills is their flexibility. It doesn't depend on the level of translation, i.e. on perfection of skill here mean the original action: both the structure of sentence, and forms of the words are reproduced by the speaker using different lexical material. If the child reproduces sentences and different words, which have been learnt by him as a ready-made thing he can say that there is no grammar skill. Learning the ready-made forms, word combinations and sentences occurs in the same way as learning lexis.

The grammar skill is based on the general conclusion. The grammar action can and must occur only in the definite lexical limits, on the definite lexical material. If the pupil can make up his sentence frequently, accurately and correctly from the grammatical point of view, he has got the grammar skill.

The main difficulty of the reproductive (active) grammar skills is to correspond the purposes of the statement, communicative approach (a question an answer and so on), words, meanings, expressed by the grammatical patterns. In that case we use basic sentences, in order to answer the definite situation. The main factor of the forming of the reproductive grammar skill is that pupils need to learn the lexis of the language. They need to learn the meanings of the words and how they are used. We must be sure that our pupils are aware of the vocabulary they need at their level and they can use the words in order to form their own sentence. Each sentence contains a grammar structure. The mastering the grammar skill lets pupils save time and strength, energy, which can give opportunity to create. Learning a number of sentences containing the same grammatical structure and a lot of words containing the same grammatical form isn't rational. But the generalization of the grammar item can relieve the work of the mental activity and let the teacher speed up the work and the children realize creative activities.

The automatic perception of the text supposes the reader to identify the grammar form according to the formal features of words, word combinations, sentences which must be combined with the definite meaning. One must learn the rules in order to identify different grammatical forms. Pupils should get to know their features, the ways of expressing them in the language. We teach children to read and aud by means of grammar. It reveals the relation between words in the sentence. Grammar is of great important when one teaches reading and auding.

The forming of the perceptive grammar and reproductive skills is quite different. The steps of the work is mastering the reproductive skills differ from the steps in mastering the perceptive skills. To master the reproductive grammar skills one should study the basic sentences or models. To master the perceptive grammar skills one should identify and analyze the grammar item. Though training is of great importance to realize the grammar item.

Before speaking about the selection of grammar material it is necessary to consider the concept grammar, i.e., what it meant by grammar.

By grammar one can mean adequate comprehension and correct usage of words in the act of communication, that is, intuitive knowledge of the grammar of the language. It is a set of reflexes enabling a person to communicate with his associates. Such knowledge is acquired by a child in the mother tongue before he goes to schools.

This grammar functions without the individual's awareness of technical nomenclature; in other words, he has no idea of the system of the language, and to use all the word-endings for singular and plural, for tense, and all the other grammar rules without special grammar lessons only due to the abundance of auding and speaking. His young mind grasps the facts and makes simple grammar rules for arranging the words to express carious thoughts and feelings. This is true because sometimes little children make mistakes by using a common rule for words to which that rule cannot be applied. For example, a little English child might be heard to say Two man's comed instead of Two men come, because the child is using the plural s rule for man to which the rule does not apply, and the past tense ed rule for come which does not obey the ordinary rule for the past tense formation. A little Russian child can say instead of using the case-ending for to which it does not apply. Such mistakes are corrected as the child grows older and learns more of his language.

For selecting grammar material for reading the principle of polysemia, for instance, is of great importance.

Pupils should be taught to distinguish such grammar items which serve to express different meanings.

For example, -s (es)

The selection of grammar material involves choosing the appropriate kind of linguistic description, i.e., the grammar which constitutes the best base for developing speech habits. Thus the school syllabus reflect a traditional approach to determining grammar material for foreign language teaching, pupils are given sentences patterns or structures, and through these structures they assimilate the English language, acquire grammar mechanisms of speech

The content of grammar teaching is disputable among teachers and methodologists, and there are various approaches to the problem, pupils should, whatever the content of the course, assimilate the ways of fitting words together to form sentences and be able to easily recognize grammar forms and structures while hearing and reading, to reproduce phrases and sentences stored up in their memory and say or write sentences of their own, using grammar items appropriate to the situation.

The grammatical systems of Russian and English are fundamentally different. English is an analytical language, in which grammatical meaning in largely expressed through the use of additional words and by changes in word order. Russian is a synthetic language, in which the majority of grammatical forms are created through changes in the structure of words, by means of a developed system of prefixes, suffixes and ending. [Brown C. and J., 1983].

We should know that the method by which children are taught must have some effect on their motivation. If they find it deadly boring they will probably become de-motivated, whereas if they have confidence in the method they will find it motivating. Child learners differ from adult learners in many ways. Children are curious, their attention is of a shorter duration, they are quite differently motivated in, and their interests are less specialized. They need frequent of activity; they need activities which are exciting and stimulating their curiosity; they need to be involved in something active.

The chief difficulty in learning a new language is that of changing from the grammatical mechanism of the native language to that of the new language. Indeed, every language has its own way of fitting words together to form sentences. In English, word order is more important than in Russian. The word order in Tom gave Helen a rose indicates what was given (a rose), to whom (Helen), and by whom (Tom). If we change the word order and say Helen gave tom a rose, we shall change the meaning of the sentence. In Russian, due to inflexions, which are very important in this language, we can say or without changing the meaning of the sentence, as the inflexion e in the word indicates the object of the action.

The inversion of subject and finite verb in Are you indicates the question form. In speaking English, Russian pupils often violate the word order which results in bad mistakes in expressing their thoughts.

The English tense system also presents a lot of trouble to Russian-speaking pupils because of the difference which exists in these languages with regard to time and tense relations. For example, the pupil cannot at first understand why we must say I have seen him today and I saw him yesterday. For him the action is completed in both sentences, and he does not associate it in any way with today or yesterday.

The sequence of tenses is another difficult point of English grammar for Russian speaking pupils because there is no such phenomenon in their mother tongue. Why should we say She said she was busy when she is busy?

The use of modal verbs in various types of sentences is very difficult for the learner. For example, he should differentiate the use of can and may while in Russian the verb may covers them both. Then he should remember which verb must be used in answers to the questions with modal verbs. For instance, May I go home? No, you mustn't. May I take your pen? Yes, you may. Must I do it? No, you needn't.

The most difficult point of English grammar is the article because it is completely strange to Russian-speaking pupils. The use of the articles and other determiners comes first in the list of the most frequent errors. Pupils are careless in the use of these tiny words and consider them unimportant for expressing their thoughts when speaking English.

English grammar must begin, therefore, with pupils' learning the meaning of these structural words, and with practice in their correct use. For example: This is a pen. The pen is red. This is my pen and that is his pen.

Younger age (7-13 year olds) is related to higher English and English-related uses primarily because children in this age range are exposed regularly to great quantities of English in English-dominant schools. They have English-speaking teachers and predominantly English-speaking classmates with whom they interact in English several hours each weekday. English is also the language of greater prestige in the community.

2.2 Linguistic features of women's speech

Some of the earliest work on gender differences suggested that women's speech isn't as effective as men's because women tend to use certain negatively evaluated forms more than men do. The next wave of linguistic research suggested that often linguistic forms that were negatively evaluated when used by women were sometimes positively evaluated when used by men, and that where linguistic forms were consistently negatively evaluated, people of lesser status (whether male or female) used such forms more than people of greater status (male or female).

All this suggested that it isn't a linguistic form itself which should be considered to have an inherent meaning, but rather the social position of the speaker, and the context in which that speaker is speaking. Recently this has been used as evidence for the necessity of studying the use and interpretation of linguistic forms within the norms of a given community by scholars like Penny Eckert, Marjorie Goodwin and Cindie McLemore. They've suggested that the categories of 'men' and 'women', unless defined within the context of a given community, are too abstract to be useful in understanding why people use a given linguistic form and what it means. Coates surveys studies of a number of linguistic forms (intonation, hedges, tag questions) associated with sex differences in English. [Coates, 1989].

It is quite easy to make the claim that men and women differ in their linguistic behavior. Assumed gender roles are contrastive, with men often thought as dominant speakers, while women are placed in a subordinate role during the conversation process. Important to realize in this issue, however, is the different perspectives the two sexes have in casual speech. `If women speak and hear a language of connection and intimacy,' a clash of conversation styles can occur, when confronted with a men's language concerned with status and independence. [Tannen D. 1990]. Misinterpretation of the use of linguistic functions, thus, often arises.

Sociological studies have shown that women are more likely to use linguistic forms thought to be `better' or more `correct' than those used by men. Trudgill (1983) provides two reasons for this. Firstly, women in our society are generally more status-conscious than men, and therefore more sensitive to linguistic norms- an idea known as hyper-correction. Secondly, working-class speechhas connotations of or associations with masculinity, which may lead men to be more favorably disposed to non-standard linguistic forms than women. [Trudgill, 1983]. This lower-class, non-standard linguistic variety has been defined by sociolinguist W. Labov as covert prestige. Linked to social class, the differences in how men and women gain, or attempt to gain status through opposing speech patterns is noticeable. There are two cases in which the woman has self-corrected herself as a show of sensitivity toward standard speech, while the men show no such effort. According to Montgomery, self-correction can be defined as the various ways utterances are reworked in the process of uttering them.

Jody: Ummm. I have to do gasuhcall Mira and get them to do thegasuhhelectricitywaterWhat else is there? I don't know.

Jody: Telephone. Everything has to be about six. I meanI get six billsevery monthso I guess all the bills have to beStudies in hyper-correction and covert prestige are generally concerned with gender in relation to social class. [Trudgill 1972, 1983; Macaulay 1977; Milroy 1980; Nichols 1983].

Two participants are of equal social status, all working at the same university as language teachers. It is difficult, therefore, make the claim that Jody's self-corrections are a reflection of being status-conscious. A more likely explanation is that her standard language use stems from the social role that are expected from men and women, and the behavior patterns that fit those assumptions. As Trudgill states, women's language is not only different, it is `better,' and is a `reflection of the fact that, generally speaking, more `correct' social behavior is expected of women.' (1983).

Early attempts to distinguish speech norms of different communities focused on sociological factors such as economic status, ethnic minorities and age. Through this research, the belief that male and female speakers may somehow differ in their communicative behavior, and thus compose different speech communities, became the focus of researchers in the early 1970's. Although lacking in empirical research, and influenced by bias about gender roles [Coates, 1989], this initial work on women's language, specifically the usage of several linguistic features, proved influential toward becoming an important issue in the study of linguistics.Sociolinguistics provided mechanisms for the scientific investigation of language variation on the basis of both socio-economic and gender factors. With respect to a number of sociolinguistic factors including gender these studies investigated linguistic features such as phonological variability of male and female differences. The goal, on the one hand, was to determine the stratification of these variables and, on the other hand, to find support for a mechanism of synchronic change. The differential use of these variables was interpreted as constituting a gender pattern. Women were found to be closer to a prestige norm (i.e. received pronunciation) than men. In particular, studies by Martin (1954), the Norwich studies by Trudgill (1972, 1978, 1998) and Portz (1982), and Fasold (1990) provided support for this position. As Martin [1954] put it: Women, it seems, are considerably more disposed than men to upgrade themselves into the middle-class and less likely to allocate themselves to the working-class - a finding which confirms the common observation that status consciousness is more pronounced among women. [Martin 1954].

Lakoff [1975] claimed that the differential use of language needed to be explained in large part on the basis of women's subordinate social status and the resulting social insecurity. Lakoff observed that women's use of color terms (mauve, ecru, lavender), of adjectives (divine, adorable), their frequent use of tag-questions (John is here, isn't he?) and weak expletives (Oh fudge I've put the peanut butter in the fridge again!) differed radically from male use. Taking her cue from Bernstein's [1972] theory of language codes she claimed that women's linguistic behavior is deficient when contrasted with male speech behavior. As one explanation for this deficiency she pointed to the differences in the socialization of men and women. At the same time another qualitative approach to male-female speech variation developed [Thorne/Henley 1975, Maltz/Borker 1982]. Cultural rather than factors of socialization were seen as being responsible for speech differentiation. Women and men are seen as constituting subgroups of the speech community. Minimal responses (also known as back-channel speech, positive feedback and assent terms) can be defined as the brief, supportive comments provided by listeners during the conversation interaction. They are a feature of jointly produced text, and show the listener's active participation in the conversation. [Coates 1989]. Common examples include mmm, uh huh, yes, yea and right.

For examples:

Ian: It's laying on my mind

Jody: Mmm.

Ian: So I think if I do it now and get it over and done with I can relax.

Jody: YeaI have to.

Ian: Pay ever after the phone.

Jody: Mmm.

Andy: High energyYou probably know himAustralian.

Ian: Mmm.

Andy: Is he a national hero ordoes anyone really care?

Ian: UhmmHe was for a while butI dunno. I think he's more popular outside Australia now

Andy: Mmman export.

Ian: Yea.

Jody: How do you think about this now? Do you think it's ready?

Ian: It probably is ready and its beef so

Jody: Yea.

Several researchers have found that, in casual conversation, it is women who take on the role as facilitator. [Zimmerman and West 1975; Fishman 1980; Holmes 2001; Tannen 1990].

Men, it has been demonstrated, are less sensitive to the interactional process. One study which Holmes recounts found that women gave over four times as much of this kind of positive feedback as men [Holmes 2001]. For women, then, `talk is for interaction. [Tannen 1990].

A deeper analysis of this view, however, should consider the influence of context. Being a small group conversation in a casual context, the goals of this conversation sample are most likely focused on group solidarity (rather than control), which follows women's strategy of being cooperative conversationalists. According to Holmes, `the norms for women's talk may be the norms for small group interaction in private contexts, where the goals of the interaction are solidarity stressing maintaining good social relations. Agreement is sought and disagreement avoided.' [2001].

It is now understood that men and women differ in terms of their communicative behavior [Coates, 1989]. In explaining these differences, however, Montgomery [1995] warns that there is a sense of variation in speech differences between men and women. One sociological point to be remembered, he states, is that `speech differences are not clear-cut' and a set of universal differences does not exist. [Montgomery, 1995]. Gender, as a `dimension of difference' between people should always be thought of in relation to other dimensions of difference, such as those of age, class, and ethnic group. A second point hestresses is that linguistically one must be clear as to what is being identified as adifference between the sexes. Unless examining identifiable linguistic behavior, such as interruptions or tag questions, it is difficult to validate generalized claims of dominance, politeness or subordinance. Even then, `the formal construction of utterances is no consistent guide to what function they might be performing in a specific context. [Montgomery, 1995]. Reinterpretations of gender-differentiated language fall into one of two approaches, which reflect contrasting views of women in society. The dominance approach considers language differences to be a reflection of traditional social roles, that of men's dominance and women's subordination. The difference approach, in contrast, focuses on sex speech differences as outcomes of two different subcultures. Women, it is claimed, come from a social world in terms of solidarity and intimacy, while men are more hierarchal and independent minded. Contrasting communicative styles are born out of these two subcultures.

The dominance approach to sex differences in speech is concerned with the imbalance of power between the sexes. Powerless speech features used by women help contribute to maintaining a subordinate position in society; while conversely, men's dominance is preserved through their linguistic behavior.

Early research that regards imbalance of power as a main factor toward gender speech differences can be attributed to Robin Lakoff, and her influential work `Language and Woman's Place' [1975]. Although relying heavily on personal observation, and later criticized for its feminist bias and lack of empirical research, Lakoff's definition of `woman's language'-both language used to describe women and language typically used by woman [cited in Fasold 1990], created an initial theoretical framework which would be critiqued and expanded by future researchers. Lakoff provides a list of ten linguistic features which characterize women's speech, as follows:

1. Lexical hedges or fillers, e.g. you know, sort of, well, you see.

2. Tag questions, e.g. she's very nice, isn't she?

3. Rising intonation on declaratives, e.g. it's really good?

4. `Empty' adjectives, e.g. divine, charming, cute.

5. Precise color terms, e.g. magenta, aquamarine.

6. Intensifiers such as just and so, e.g. I like him so much.

7. `Hypercorrect' grammar, e.g. consistent use of standard verb forms.

8. `Superpolite' forms, e.g. indirect requests, euphemisms.

9. Avoidance of strong swear words, e.g. fudge, my goodness.

10. Emphatic stress, e.g. it was a BRILLIANT performance. [cited in Holmes 2001].

As in English, the Kyrgyz employ many wordless sounds to express meanings : as they listen to somebody else they make sounds like un hun, aah or mmm. to indicate No, they may utter uh uh and shake their heads oy is used like oops in English to indicate a mistake ahyee or oy voy yuy is used to express surprise or amazement - equivalent to really or wow in English erah is used to show disappointment, hunh indicates pain, oof suggests that they are tired, and erf that something is terrible or disgusting.

Consistent in Lakoff's list of linguistic features is their function in expressing lack of confidence. Holmes [2001] divides this list into two groups. Firstly, those `linguistic devices which may be used for hedging or reducing the force of an utterance,' such as fillers, tag questions, and rising intonation on declaratives, and secondly, `features which may boost or intensify a proposition's force' [Holmes, J., 2001], such as emphatic stress and intensifiers. According to Lakoff, both hedging and boosting modifiers show a women's lack of power in a mixed-sex interaction. While the hedges' lack of assertiveness is apparent, boosters, she claims, intensify the force of a statement with the assumption that a women would not be taken seriously otherwise.The use of compliments and apologies by women showed that women are more personal-oriented and show greater concern for the other, while men are more task oriented and assert more power than the other. Many researchers also agree that polite and collaborative styles of communication are powerless when they are not reciprocated such as how women could not easily compliment men as men could do to them. Women also use apologies more than men, showing their intention to restore the balance between speaker and hearer, whereas men prefer formal strategy or some ambiguous explanation type of apology to maintain their `one-up' position.

Herbert [1992] found that women's compliments were more personal in focus, whereas men's compliments were more impersonal, especially when speaking to men. He also suggested that `subjective' compliments such as I really like your shirt, have less force than the `objective' form such as That's a nice shirt.When seen from the syntactic structure both men and women were generally consistent with the patterns:

NP is/looks (really) ADJ (e.g., That shirt is so nice)

I (really) like/love NP (e.g., I love your hair)

PRO is (really) (a) ADJ NP (e.g., This was really a great meal)

The adjectives nice, good, pretty, beautiful, and great are more often used. Verbs such as like and love are also more prominent. However, women rely more heavily than men on the I like NP pattern which indicates a personal focus, while men use ADJ NP pattern more often. Herbert mentioned that there is a general belief that women prefer personalized to impersonalized forms, parallel with the characterization of women's style as social, affiliative, other-oriented, socioemotional, and supportive. He also states that compliments from females are longer than compliments from males.What is more interesting in the study of compliments is to see how compliments are responded by the addressees. Herbert [1990], based on his study done in 1986 and 1989 distinguished 12 types of compliment responses:

Appreciation token. A verbal or non verbal acceptance of the compliment. (e.g. Thanks, Thank you, [nod])

Comment acceptance. Addressee accepts the complimentary force and offers a relevant comment on the appreciated topic (e.g., Yeah, it's my favorite too).

Praise Upgrade. Addressee accepts the compliment and asserts that the compliment force is insufficient (e.g., Really brings out the blue in my eyes, doesn't it?).

Comment history. Addressee offers a comment(s) on the object complimented. (e.g., I bought it for the trip to Arizona).

Reassignment. Addressee agrees with the compliment assertion, but the complimentary force is transferred to a third person (e.g., My brother gave it to me) or to the object itself (e.g., It really knitted itself).

Return. As with number 5 except that the praise is shifted (or returned) to the first speaker (e.g., So's yours).

Scale down. Addressee disagrees with the complimentary force, pointing to some flaw in the object or claiming that the praise is overstated (e.g., It's really quite old).

Question. Addressee questions the sincerity or the appropriateness of the compliment (e.g., Do you really think so?).

Disagreement. Addressee asserts that the object complimented is not worthy of praise (e.g., I hate it).

Qualification. Weaker than number 9: addressee merely qualifies the original assertion, usually with though, but, well, etc. (e.g., It's alright, but Len's is nicer).

No acknowledgment. Addressee gives no indication of having heard the compliment: The addressee wither (a) responds with an irrelevant comment (i.e. topic shift) or (b) gives no response.

Request interpretation. Addressee, consciously or not, interpretes the compliments as a request rather than a simple compliment. Such responses are not compliment responses per se as the addressee does not perceive the previous speech act as a compliment (e.g., You wanna borrow this one too?)

For women, she argued, compliments are positively affective speech acts, serving to increase or consolidate the solidarity between speaker and addressee. Across cultures, one's perception on compliments also varies. In Indonesia, for instance, a compliment on someone's possession may indicate the complimenter's envy to what the addressee has. The recipient of the compliment may also feel obliged to offer the complimented object to the complimenter. As to how the perception differs between men's and women's in Indonesian, there has not been any published research found so far. [Johnson, D.M. & Roen, D.H., 1992].According to Maltz and Borker [1982], who introduced this view which values women's interactional styles as different, yet equal to men's, American men and women come from different sociolinguistic subcultures, having learned to do different things with words in a conversation [cited in Freeman and McElhinny1996]. They cite as an example the different interpretations of minimal responses, such as nods and short comments like umhm and yes. For men, these comments mean `I agree with you', while for women they mean `I'm listening to you - please continue' Rather than a women's style being deficient, as Lakoffwould believe, it is simply different. Inherent in this position is that cross-culturalmisunderstanding often occurs in mixed-sex conversation, as `individuals wrongly interpret cues according to their own rules. [Lakoff, 1975]. Like compliments, apology is also another form of politeness strategy. Holmes [1990] differentiates compliments and apologies as: Compliments focus on the addressee's positive face wants, whereas apologies are generally aimed at face redress associated with face threatening acts (FTA) or offences which have damaged the addressee's face in some respect and can therefore be regarded as what Brown and Levinson called as negative politeness strategies. There have been a number of classification systems of apology devised by many researchers. Holmes [1990] formulated them based on her naturally occurring data in her New Zealand corpus as follows:

An explicit expression of apology

Offer apology, e.g., I apologize

Express regret, e.g., I'm sorry'

Request forgiveness, e.g., excuse me; forgive me

An explanation or account, an excuse or justification

e.g., I wasn't expecting it to be you; we're both new to this

An acknowledgment of responsibility

Accept blame, e.g., it was my fault

Express self-deficiency, e.g., I was confused; I didn't see you

Recognize H as entitles to an apology, e.g., you're right; you deserve an apology

Express lack of intent, e.g., I didn't mean to

Offer repair/redress, e.g., we'll replace it for you; I'll bring you another

A promise of forebearance

e.g., I promise it won't happen again

Holmes found that apologies used more frequently by women in speech to other women, and least frequently in the speech of men to other men. Women apologize more to other women is a mark of positive politeness but it is realized through negative politeness strategy. In unequal and distant relations, men's apologies are to assert the position of social authority, hierarchy and control. Women therefore use more strategies which focus on a harmonious relationship with the other person by expressing lack of negative intent and recognizing the other person's right to an apology.

Tannen [1990] provides much research on the concept of misunderstanding in the dual-culture approach. According to her, the language of women is primarily `rapport-talk', where establishing connections and promoting sameness is emphasized. Men, on the other hand, use language described as `report-talk,' as a way of preserving independence while exhibiting knowledge and skill. [Tannen D.1990]. The contrasting views of relationships are apparent: negotiating with a desire for solidarity in women, maintaining status and hierarchical order in men.The function of a command can be described as an utterance designed to get someone else to do something [Montgomery, 1995]. Several studies [Goodwin 1980; Cameron, McAlinden and O'Leary 1989; Tannen 1990, 1994; Holmes 2001] have commented on the different ways men and women phrase commands. Men tend to use simple, direct statements, whereas women rely on `couching their commands as inclusive suggestions for action.' [Montgomery 1995]. Consider the following examples:

Jody: Mmmhome phone.Andy: What home?Jody: My home. What's my phone number? Are you gonna plug it in?Jody: MmmHow many? Do you want it small?Andy: Smallish.Ian: I like this stuff.Jody: Like that?Andy: Mmmeven smaller.Jody: Smaller? Do you want to put it here? Why don't you just bite it?

Jody has chosen to couch her commands in the form of questions. Rather then stating the bald commands, `Here's my phone number. Plug it in,' and `Put ithere. Bite it,' she opted for a more indirect approach. Lakoff [cited in Tannen 1994] describes two benefits of indirectness: defensiveness and rapport. Defensiveness `refers to the speaker's preference not to go on record with an idea in order to be able to disclaim, rescind, or modify it if it does not meet with a positive response' Rapport refers to getting one's way not by demanding it, but because the listener is working toward the same end, indirectly encouraging the common goal.

Sociological studies have shown that women are more likely to use linguistic forms thought to be `better' or more `correct' than those used by men. Trudgill [1983] provides two reasons for this. Firstly, women in our society are generally more status-conscious than men, and therefore more sensitive to linguistic norms- an idea known as hyper-correction. Secondly, working-class speechhas connotations of or associations with masculinity, which may lead men to be more favorably disposed to non-standard linguistic forms than women. [Trudgill, 1983]. This lower-class, non-standard linguistic variety has been defined bysociolinguist W. Labov as covert prestige. Linked to social class, the differences in how men and women gain, or attempt to gain status through opposing speech patterns is noticeable. [Labov W., 1972].

2.3 Age-graded language and the way of improving it

It is well known that human culture, social behavior and thinking cannot exist without language. Being a social and national identity, and a means of human communication, language cannot help bearing imprints of ethnic and cultural values as well as the norms of behavior of a given language community. All is reflected in the vocabulary of a language. But it should be noted that the grammatical structure of a language more exactly reflects the mentality of a nation as it is closer to thinking. "While the number of words in a language represents the volume of its world, the grammatical structure of a language gives an idea of the inner organization of thinking". [Gumboldt V. 1984]. Language and man are inseparable. Language does not exist outside man and man as Homo sapiens does not exist outside language. So, man cannot be studied outside language and vice versa. Language reflects the world around us - through man and for man, language likewise reflects the culture created by man, preserves it for posterity and hands it down from generation to generation, from father to son. Language is a cognitive tool through which man perceives the universe and culture. And, finally, language is a cultural tool: it forms man, determines his behaviour, way of life, outlook, mentality, national character and ideology. Language is a strict and incorruptible teacher; it imposes upon man the ideas, concepts, models of cultural perception and behaviour that are inherent in it. In a sense, man is slave to his language: from the cradle, he is subjected to the influence and power of the language spoken by his parents and together with this language he assimilates the culture of the speech community to which he belongs through no choice of his own. A lot has been written by psychologists, culturologists and sociologists on the correlation between national culture and personality. In their book, "Language and Culture", E.M. Vereshchagin and V.G. Kostomarov, comment as follows in this connection: "A man is not born a Russian, German or Japanese etc., but becomes one as a result of living in the relevant national community of people. In its upbringing, a child is exposed to the impact of the national culture to which, the people surrounding it, belong". However, one should not forget the huge role played by language, in direct association with culture, in upbringing and personality formation. The well-known aphorism by the Soviet psychologist, B.G. Ananev, quoted by Vereshchagin and Kostomarov, "personality is a product of culture", should be altered to read: personality is a product of language and culture. As soon as man is born, he hears the sounds of his future mother tongue; language introduces him to the surrounding world and forces upon him that perception, that picture (model) "painted" before he was born and without him. At the same time, language forms a man's idea of the world and community to which he belongs, of its culture, i.e. of the rules of co-existence within this community, system of values, moral standards, conduct, etc.More than 6% of all adults in the United States have speech difficulties that involve articulation, language, voice, fluency, hearing, or swallowing. In addition, 5% of all children exhibit impaired speech, language, or hearing. Many of these individuals can be helped by speech therapy. Speech and language disorders affect the way people speak to and understand each other. These disorders may range from problems with simple sounds to not being able to speak or use language at all. Speech and language disorders include stuttering, characterized by interruptions in the regular flow or rhythm of speech; articulation disorders, involving difficulties in forming or stringing sounds together; voice disorders, characterized by inappropriate voice pitch, loudness, or quality; aphasia, or the loss of speech and language abilities resulting from stroke or head injury; and delayed language disorder, characterized by slow development of the vocabulary and grammar required to express and understand thoughts and ideas.




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