Mar. 2nd, 2012

liv: cast iron sign showing etiolated couple drinking tea together (argument)
Author: Deborah Cameron

Details: (c) Deborah Cameron 2007; Pub Oxford University Press 2007; ISBN 978-0-19-921447-1

Verdict: The myth of Mars and Venus is an accessible and important contribution to the debate about gender and language.

Reasons for reading it: I've been meaning to read Cameron for ages, because people keep quoting her or linking to her articles and I have a lot of sympathy for her views.

How it came into my hands: Thuggish Poet gave it to us as a wedding present, to dispel any worries we might have that men and women can never communicate effectively.

detailed review )

I think tMoM&V is a book that everybody who wants to have an opinion about gender and language should read, it's very much a key aspect of that debate. And I don't think most of my friends are likely to take John Gray or Louann Brizendine seriously, but may well be a bit less skeptical when it comes to people like Baron-Cohen who sound "sciencey", so it's definitely good to have access to the other side of the argument. But it's not a book that every right-thinking person should accept wholesale, because it's just not rigorous enough. I think I need something one notch more academic than this, perhaps something aimed at university undergraduates rather than complete laypeople or subject experts.

Soundbite

Miscellaneous. Eclectic. Random. Perhaps markedly literate, or at least suffering from the compulsion to read any text that presents itself, including cereal boxes.

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