Tuesday, 7 March 2017

Cardiff University Bans Gender-Bias Phrases Including Mankind and Sportsmanship

In an effort to make students talk and write in a more inclusive manner Cardiff Metropolitan University has published a list of words which are no longer acceptable on campus. The words cannot be used by students or staff and if used, could result in disciplinary action being taken.

The list appears in the university’s revised code of practice, together with suggested alternatives (see below).

The change in policy has prompted some to complain that their free speech is being restricted. Dr Joanna Williams, an academic freedom advocate and University of Kent lecturer, told The Telegraph the ban was “unnecessary”.

“The idea that in a university people need to be dictated to in this way is really insulting to students and academics, we should be able to cope with words.

“These words have evolved over a long period of time and they don’t have sexist associations.”

A spokesperson for Cardiff Metropolitan University said “The University is committed unreservedly to the principle of academic freedom within the law.

“It is also committed to providing an environment where everyone is valued and treated with dignity and respect. These two commitments are cornerstones of academic life at the University.

“The Code of Practice on Using Inclusive Language sets out a broad approach to promoting fairness and equality through raising awareness about the effects of potentially discriminatory vocabulary.

“In particular, it includes some suggestions to support gender equality; these are consistent with other guidance (e.g., British Sociological Association’s information on Equality and Diversity).”

Terms With Suggested Alternatives

  • "Best man for the job" – Best person for the job
  • "Businessman/woman" – Businessperson, manager, executive
  • "Chairman/woman" – Chair, chairperson, convenor, head
  • "Charwoman, cleaning lady" – Cleaner
  • "Craftsman/woman" – Craftsperson, craft worker
  • "Delivery man" – Delivery clerk, courier
  • "Dear Sirs" – Dear Sir/Madam (or Madam/Sir)
  • "Fireman" – Fire-fighter
  • "Forefathers" – Ancestors, forebears
  • "Foreman/woman" – Supervisor, head juror
  • "Gentleman’s agreement" – Unwritten agreement, agreement based on trust
  • "Girls" (for adults) – Women
  • "Headmaster/mistress" – Head teacher
  • "Housewife" – Shopper, consumer, homemaker (depends on context)
  • "Layman" – Lay person
  • "Man" or "mankind" – Humanity, humankind, human race, people
  • "Man" (verb) eg man the desk – Operate, staff, work at
  • "Man in the street", "common man" – Average/ordinary/typical citizen/person – but is there such a person?
  • "Man-hour" – Work-hour, labour time
  • "Man-made" – Artificial, manufactured, synthetic
  • "Manpower" – Human resources, labour force, staff, personnel, workers, workforce
  • "Miss/Mrs" – Ms unless a specific preference has been stated – though its common not to use titles at all these days
  • "Policeman/woman" – Police Officer
  • "Right-hand man" – Chief assistant
  • "Salesman/girl/woman" – Sales assistant/agent/clerk/representative/staff/worker
  • "Spokesman/woman" – Spokesperson, representative
  • "Sportsmanship" – Fairmess, good humour, sense of fair play
  • "Steward/ess" – Airline staff, flight attendant, cabin crew
  • "Tax man" – Tax officer/inspector
  • "Waitress" – Waiter, server
  • "Woman doctor" (or feminine forms of nouns eg actress, poetess) – Doctor (actor, poet etc)
  • "Working man", "working mother/wife" – Wage-earner/taxpayer/worker
  • "Workman" – Worker/operative/trades person
  • "Workmanlike" – Efficient/proficient/skilful/thorough

No comments: