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Are men and women speaking the same language? – Metro US

Are men and women speaking the same language?

American sociolinguist Deborah Tannen thinks the communication between men and women is like communication between cultures with different customs and different goals. In her book, You Just Don’t Understand: Women and Men in Conversation, she discusses how certain sentences mean one thing to a woman and something else to a man.

Women want to be loved, men want to be respected and this is what is shown in the way they communicate. Is this statement true?
It’s an exaggeration, so it’s not literally true. But there is an underlying truth: women often care more about if other people like them, assuming that they will be respected if they deserve to be. Men often focus more on their place in an hierarchy and their status in relation to other men, so they may care more about being respected. Note that I said “often.”

What are the different ways in which men and women argue with each other?
Women are more likely to use personal examples of themselves and others; men are more likely to play “devil’s advocate,” arguing a position they don’t really believe in order to win. Women are more likely to admit fault in some areas while denying it in others, whereas men are more likely to refuse to admit any fault.

Can socio-economic changes in the lives of women shift the way men and women communicate?
Yes and no. As women see more options for careers and assume positions where they are required to speak in more assertive ways, they sometimes get negative responses at home. This discourages them from making the changes. The hope, I believe, is that women and men both may find a common ground by appreciating that there are different ways of speaking, both of which make sense, rather than changing their styles.

Have there been many changes in recent years to how men and women communicate?
Little has changed because we learn ways of talking as children growing up, and we play in sex-separate groups. Then we come to associate ways of talking with being a good person; we don’t see them as style differences.

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