Angelica Mucchi Faina, Martina Barro

Gender-marked linguistic expressions and persuasion: the case of professoressa

  • Abstract

Informations and abstract

Keywords: Gender roles, gender-marked language, persuasion, peripheral cue

Guidelines for non-sexist usage of the Italian language suggest to avoid the suffix -essa because of its negative connotation. The word professoressa could possibly be an exception. In order to ascertain how much this title is actually an exception, two experiments have been conducted using a revised form of the Goldberg's paradigm (1968). On the whole, the studies show that the title professoressa acts as a cue unfavourable to the source. Results are discussed in relation to the salience of gender categorization that, in professional context, appears unfavourable to women. Some devices for counterbalancing, even if partially, this effect are advanced.

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