Here is the text of the letter I sent back:
Sony Ericsson WTA Tour promoting gender equality--right.Of course it's a word...the insistence on using sexist language because the lexicon has always refused to acknowledge females is just one more way of advancing sexism. Any word with "man" in it can also be a word with "woman" in it.
Think back to the time--not that long ago--when we were told that there was no such word as "chairman." There was "no such word" because our culture could not imagine a female being in charge. Or think back to the time when we were told there was no such word as "policewoman" or "postwoman" or "repairwoman." Continuing to call a woman a man acknowledges a belief that male is the dominant gender; that is called sexism. Nothing is more important than language. The Sony Ericsson WTA Tour--of all organizations--should be sensitive to the reality that the culture in general--including the sports media--treats women's sports as an afterthought. Calling women men advances that tradition. Calling Ivanovic a "sportsman" sends a very clear message that a sporting virtue is a male quality, and we all know that it is not.
And anyway, the tour does not have to do anything "innovative" to correct the problem. That is because the word "sportswoman" has been part of the official lexicon for some time. You will find it in all of the major dictionaries: Merriam-Webster, American Heritage, OE, Random House, etc. So even using a very narrow, literal definition--it is indeed a word
women like you ruin the call to feminism
Post a Comment