Latest Issue: Vol 14, No 4 (2020) RSS2 logo

Gender and Language

Rodrigo Borba, Universidade Federal do Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
Kira Hall, University of Colorado Boulder, USA
Mie Hiramoto, National University of Singapore, Singapore

Book Review Editor
Federica Formato, University of Brighton, UK

Line Editor Assistant
Ayden Parish, University of Colorado Boulder, USA

Social Media Manager
Olivia Hirschey Marrese, University of Colorado Boulder, USA

Please send books for review to:
Federica Formato
University of Brighton
B211 Checkland Building, Village Way

About the Journal

Gender and Language offers an international forum for language-based research on gender and sexuality from feminist, queer, and trans perspectives. While there are many journals focused on gender and many journals focused on language, Gender and Language is currently the only academic journal to which scholars interested in the intersection of these dimensions can turn, whether as contributors looking for an audience sharing this focus or as readers seeking a reliable source for current discussions in the field. The journal showcases research on the social analytics of gender in discourse domains that include institutions, media, politics and everyday interaction.

As a point of departure, Gender and Language defines gender along two key dimensions. First, gender is a key element of social relationships that are often loosely linked to perceived differences between women and men. Gender relations are ideologically encoded in linguistic and symbolic representations, normative concepts, institutions, social practices, and social identities. Second, gender is a primary arena for articulating power in complex interaction with other dimensions of social difference and identity, such as class, race, ability, age, and sexuality. Gender is understood as multi-faceted, always changing, and often contested. The editors welcome discussion of the advantages and disadvantages of competing definitions of gender and of new analytical perspectives.

Gender and Language was established in 2007 by the founding editors and Equinox Publishing, with the endorsement of the International Gender and Language Association (IGALA). Equinox and IGALA continue to enjoy a close partnership to further mutual goals of promoting cutting edge research on gender and language. Most critically, the journal aims to bring together a pan-global, interdisciplinary consortium of scholars whose work collectively challenges established disciplinary boundaries and incorporates multiple geopolitical axes of academic interpretation. To this end, the journal welcomes research employing a range of different approaches, among them applied linguistics, conversation analysis, corpus linguistics, critical discourse analysis, discursive psychology, ethnography of communication, interactional sociolinguistics, linguistic anthropology, linguistic landscapes, pragmatics, raciolinguistics, social semiotics, sociophonetics, stylistics, symbolic interactionism and variationist sociolinguistics.

Gender and Language welcomes research articles that display originality with respect to theoretical framing, use of empirical materials, timeliness, and/or methodological orientation. The journal also invites critical essays, interviews, exchanges, colloquia, commentaries and responses, brief translations of key articles originally published in languages other than English, profiles of key figures, reviews of recently published books and special issues devoted to topics of relevance to the field.

Abstracting & Indexing

The journal is covered by:


Journal Impact Factor: 0.429 (Clarivate Analytics, 2018 data)

5 Year Impact Factor: 0.500

CiteScore 2019: 0.9

SNIP 2019: 0.647

SJR 2019: 0.210

Qualis CAPES tier 2

Publication Frequency
four issues a year from 2017
ISSN: 1747-6321 (print)
ISSN: 1747-633X (online)

Open Access Virtual Issue Now Available!

We are very pleased to announce that our first FREE TO DOWNLOAD Virtual Special Issue, “Corpus Approaches to Gender and Language”(V1, 2013), edited by Paul Baker, is now available to access here.



For general inquires, please contact:General Inquiries

Most Viewed Articles


Do bodies matter? Travestis' embodiment of (trans)gender identity through the manipulation of the Brazilian Portuguese grammatical gender system

This study investigates Southern Brazilian travestis' manipulation of gender identity through the manipulation of the Portuguese grammatical gender system. We argue that the embodiment of feminine features onto biologically male bodies enables travestis to wander through various ideologies about masculinity and femininity and incorporate these ideologies in their linguistic construction of identity. Travestis use masculine forms to refer to themselves or other travestis when: (1) producing narratives about the time before their body transformations took place; (2) reporting speech produced by others when talking about travestis; (3) talking about themselves within their family relationships; and, perhaps the most unveiling category, (4) distinguishing themselves from ‘other' travestis they do not identify with - a face-saving strategy. Thus, the study shows how southern Brazilian travestis use the grammatical gender system in Portuguese as a linguistic resource to manipulate their identity/ies and the identity/ies of the community they belong to.
Posted: 2007-01-18More...

Social constructionism, postmodernism and feminist sociolinguistics

This article argues that it is time to put women back at the centre of language and gender research. Following a discussion of some issues with social constructionist
and postmodernist approaches to the analysis of gendered social interaction, a case is made for identifying general (often repressive or constricting) patterns based on
analyses using a detailed ethnographic approach. More specifically, the paper outlines the advantages of using a community of practice approach to analysing workplace discourse, providing evidence of the ‘gender order’, the repressive ideology which ensures that deviations from gender norms (by women or men) entail penalties. It is argued
that such an approach provides a means of identifying discursive behaviours which penalise women in many workplace contexts on the one hand, while documenting a
range of active discursive ways of resisting sexist behaviours on the other.
Posted: 2007-01-18More...

Can the term "genderlect" be saved? A postmodernist re-definition.

This article is an attempt to reclaim the term "genderlect" as a valuable sociolinguistic concept. It shows that "genderlect" in its traditional sense as a variety according to speaker sex is just as much a myth as are early sociolinguistic theorisations of "women's/men's language". From a postmodernist perspective, genderlects must be seen as stereotypical resources for gendered stylisation practices that are not to be equalled with how women and men actually speak. This is illustrated by using material from a comprehensive study on linguistic gender stylisation in advertising discourse. Moreover, it is suggested that the strictly binary genderlect concept is abandoned and replaced by another one that sees genderlects as heavily context-dependent, community-based and therefore infinite in number. A postmodernist genderlect concept should be able to deal with hegemonic as well as subversive gender styles and at the same time acknowledge that what is generally judged to be hegemonic in one context might be subversive in another (or vice versa).
Posted: 2007-07-14More...

Putting communities of practice in their place

The study of language, gender, and sexuality has enthusiastically embraced the concept community of practice. Now the field needs to take the concept further in two directions: (1) The comparative direction examines different but similar kinds of communities of practice to explore generalizations about how practice contributes
to the linguistic construction of gender and sexuality; (2) The relational direction locates communities of practice in relation to a world beyond – to other communities of practice, to social networks, to institutions (e.g. schools, churches, prisons), and to more global imagined communities (e.g. nations, women). For each direction, we mention
exemplary studies, emphasizing that the construct community of practice does not offer new analytic units or replace other concepts, but provides fresh perspectives
on familiar social units and enriches analyses drawing on other analytic concepts. Only an interdisciplinary research community where researchers connect their work
can put communities of practice in their proper place.
Posted: 2007-01-18More...

Zuiqian 'deficient mouth': Discourse, gender and domestic violence

This article examines the relationship between language, gender and domestic violence. Contextualizing the study of domestic violence in China, this article focuses its analysis on a metapragmatic discourse on domestic violence - zuiqian ‘deficient mouth' in a working-class community in Beijing. It argues that the discourse of zuiqian, by blaming women's mouths and their ‘deviant' speaking styles, individualizes the serious social problem of domestic violence and downplays the structural force that causes male violence. By fragmenting women and regulating their mouths, the discourse of zuiqian serves as an anatomic mode of power (anatomo-politics) for the state to discipline women and safeguard society. Also, this discourse constitutes a repudiating site (i.e. a site at which subjects are condemned or criticized in order for them to emerge) to construct the kind of subject identified with China's neoliberal agenda. This study shows that both language and gender can be engaged as either anatomic modes of power or repudiating sites for subjectivity formation in the broader political and economic transformations of the process of globalization. In the context of neoliberalism, the private, the individual and the body have become the bases for political legitimacy.
Posted: 2007-01-18More...

Recent Articles


‘Reclaiming my time’: signifying, reclamation and the activist strategies of Black women’s language

This article explores how three Black women use the culturally grounded semantic and rhetorical strategies of their discursive practices as modes of symbolic action to negotiate alternative relationships and realities in response to white supremacist patriarchy. Placing intersectional feminist perspectives in conversation with the literature on African American Women’s Language (AAWL), this research applies critical discourse analysis to cases of signifying and resignification (semantic reclamation). The interactions are taken from contemporary US politics: Maxine Waters’ assertion ‘Reclaiming my time’, Therese Okoumou’s literal retooling of ‘We go high’ and Samirah Raheem’s reclamation of ‘slut’. Together they highlight three iterations of Black womanhood, intersectional feminist linguistic resistance and gendered, racialised defiance to engage with the inclusive scope of feminism. The application of interdisciplinary insights to the analysis of AAWL herein demonstrates the broader social significance and productive political power of language for intersectional women, people of colour and gender minoritised communities.
Posted: 2020-10-05More...

Creation of femininity in Japanese televised “beauty ads”: Traditional values, kawaii cuteness, and a dash of feminism

Advertising is a powerful tool that encapsulates and reinforces gender ideologies through the repeated presentation of stereotyped visions of femininity. In response to societal change, however, advertising has recently begun to incorporate postfeminist ideals of ‘power femininity’ alongside traditional gender stereotypes (Lazar 2014). In Japan, this duality is further complicated by the dominant spread of kawaii ‘cuteness’, which has become a crucial feature of normative femininity. The present work demonstrates the importance of investigating Japanese television advertisements to uncover the layered nature of women’s portrayals, which blend traditional gender roles and the reigning contemporary ideology of kawaii, along with sporadic infusions of postfeminist values. Based on quantitative and qualitative multi-modal discourse analysis, this article examines the use of women’s language and visual images in 50 Japanese televised ‘beauty ads,’ exploring the tactics they use to maintain and promulgate an idealized but powerless femininity of kawaii
Posted: 2020-01-17More...

Nerdy girls talking gross: popular perceptions on the quality, role and influence of language in manga

This article examines how people view language use in manga (Japanese comic books and graphic novels) through an analysis of posts on a Japanese online bulletin board system. The analysis uncovers three central assumptions regarding texts understood as manga: they lack linguistic sophistication; their linguistic authenticity is problematic; and they negatively impact real-world speech. In the posts, language in manga is often assigned a vaguely negative influence on communication skills, and engagement with manga is foregrounded as a problematic social issue. Beliefs about language in manga parallel commonly held beliefs about language used by otaku ‘nerds/fans’, suggesting that metapragmatic stereotypes have expanded from media users to the media itself. Such criticism often targets women: although otaku are normatively viewed as male, women seen as encroaching masculine forms of engagement with manga may also receive criticism. The article thus contributes to an understanding of how perceptions of language and gender in media are formed.
Posted: 2020-01-17More...

Contesting and advocating gender ideologies: an analysis of sararīman (salaried men) characters’ hegemonic masculinities in a Japanese TV drama

Previous scholars have identified sararīman (salaried men), who prioritise work over family, as the ideal of hegemonic masculinity in Japan. This study focuses on sararīman characters’ language use in the workplace as depicted in the 2015 Japanese TV drama Age Harassment. Employing the concepts of stance and hegemonic masculinities, the study demonstrates that, in this mediatised representation, the sararīman characters draw on diverse gender ideologies to display masculine identities. Using online commentary, the study also explores audience members’ responses to the drama’s depiction of masculinities. The study’s analysis of these two types of data suggests that despite increasing social acceptance of more diverse masculinities, the stereotypical sararīman remains to some extent the hegemonic ideal in contemporary Japan.
Posted: 2020-01-17More...

Identity and category construction of the sengyōshufu (‘househusband’) in Japanese TV shows: a gendered division of labour in transition

This study illustrates the discursive construction of the househusband in Japanese TV shows as a situated gender practice. Although the category of sengyōshufu ‘househusband’ has existed since at least the 1980s in Japan, the dominance of the ideology of ‘salaryman masculinity’ has ensured its marginalisation. The recent emergence of the househusband as a topic in mainstream media discourse reflects a social change in the gendered division of labour in Japan. Employing conversation analysis and membership categorisation analysis, this study explores how participants in TV shows constitute the identity and category of househusband, drawing on verbal and embodied resources in interaction. Through this analysis, the study reveals both positive and covertly negative attitudes towards househusbands, suggesting that the ‘traditional’ gendered division of labour in Japan is in transition.
Posted: 2020-01-17More...






Special Issue: Gender and Language in Eastern and Central Europe
Special Issue Editor: Ksenija Bogetić

Posted: 2020-11-23 More...




Special Issue: Gender and Language in Eastern and Central Europe
Special Issue Editor: Ksenija Bogetić

Posted: 2020-11-23 More...
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