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The Impact Of Evolution And Culture On English Language Differences In The Genders

1744 words - 7 pages

Even though men and women both the same language, they speak it very differently. “Language is the means by which we transmit our ideas, feelings, and needs” (Lopez-Rocha 195). The different forms of English they speak can cause communication problems between them. It is a common saying that half of American marriages end in divorce. “Communication problems was cited as the most common factor that leads to divorce (65 percent)” (Poor). Sometimes it is not an actual lack of communication but rather a perceived one. Men and women communicate very different from each other and often misunderstand each other. What influences men and women to speak differently? Evolutionary roles, need for survival, and cultural perception are the main influences on why men speak more objectively and aggressive and women speak more subjectively and passive.
Obviously, men and women are different sexes and different genders. Lots of people tend to use the words sex and gender interchangeably but sex and gender are not synonyms. According to “Theorizing Gender in Sociolinguistics and Linguistic Anthropology”, “I use the term “sex” only when I was speaking of biological differences between males and females and use “gender” whenever I was referring to the social, cultural, psychological constructs that are imposed upon these biological differences. (Mcelhinny 22). Sex only has to do with the physical form and the hormones produced. A person is born a specific sex: either male or female. Gender is society’s definition of how either sex should behave.
Evolution is the force behind how sex impacts language. “The term evolution is used to describe a heritable change in one or more characteristics of a population from one generation to the next” (Brooker 459). “The term population refers to all members of a species that live in the same area at the same time and have the opportunity to interbreed” (Brooker 459). Evolution is survival of the fittest. Fitness is “the relative likelihood that one genotype will contribute to the gene pool of the next generation with other genotypes” (Brooker 483). A genotype is “the genetic composition of an individual” (Brooker 325). Natural selection, along with evolution, impacts language. “During the process of natural selection, individuals with heritable traits that make them better suited to their native environment tend to flourish and reproduce, whereas other individuals are less likely to survive and reproduce. As a result of natural selection, certain traits that favor reproduce success become more prevalent in a population over time” (Brooker 463).
Evolutionary psychology helps explain how one’s sex impacts their language. “Evolutionary psychology has been described as a new ‘science of human nature’” (Cameron 3). Being born male or being born female may as much of an impact on a person’s language as the culture he or she are raised in. This is an example of the nature versus nurture debate. Evolution (sex) is the nature aspect...

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