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Louise's current project is to make all her sweet romances available on the internet.
Look out for her new Regency romance, Regency Fortune, coming soon!


Tuesday, 27 January 2009

Non-Sexist Writing

This is a useful and interesting book. I've made notes on three main areas. One is to think about individual words - don't say man the reception desk (especially if you are talking about a female) say staffed the reception desk. They give many examples. If in doubt you can always use the usual form, I'm never sure about words such as chair/chairperson/chairman, but it is good to be aware of the differences. The next is to recast sentences to avoid any awkward constructions when speaking generally - a child can feed himself, for example, could become a child can eat without help. The third section is very interesting - it's about trivialising. I think it was Adrienne Rich who said that being called a poetess brought out the terroristess in her. It can be obvious, as in two Thais and their wives, or more subtle, as in 'she helped slaves to escape.' Doesn't 'led slaves to freedom' sound stronger?


Jen Black said...

I suppose if you're in POV as a male chauvinist you can have "man" the desk?

Louise said...

That's a good point, Jen - the words a person uses is a good way to show character - and also proves why you should never say never!