Figurative Construction of Gender through Metaphor and Metonymy

Iraj Montashery


The issue of sexist language has been debated within feminist circles since the 1960s. The concern to change language which discriminated against women has been a key concern for feminist theorists and activists, trying to change the way women were represented in different Medias like TV, advertisements, newspapers and magazines, or in literature and also the way that they were named and addressed in texts and in interaction. Sexism is still a form of language use which affects conversations, one’s views of other people and one’s own place within society. In this article, I am concerned with the description of structures in language which seem to determine that terms associated with gender will acquire particular types of meanings in such a way that those terms associated with women will take on a range of clearly identifiable connotations. Social labeling practices offer a window on the construction of gendered identities and social relations. I will examine metaphor and metonymy as two dominant figures in construction of gender through language.


Language; Gender; Metaphor; Metonymy; Sexism; Ideology; Feminism; Representation;

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