Is verbosity female?


  • Catia Leonetti University of Bologna, Italy



More and more frequently we talk about gender gap, women’s subordination, struggles to promote gender equality. Language is one of the fields of these discriminations. ‘Women’s language’ is, indeed, the label we use to identify the way all women speak and it intrinsically and exclusively refers to feminine aspects such as: hypercorrections, sentimental adjectives, super polite forms, tag questions. Therefore, this article analyzes one of the oldest feminine stereotypes, which is “verbosity”, through a sociological, psycholinguistic and (socio)linguistic path along a period which goes from the Twenties of the Twentieth century to nowadays. The endpoint of this paper is to rebut this cliché which, yesterday as today, brands women as blabbermouth, talkative and chatterer.

Keywords: women, language, stereotypes, talkativeness.