Ceteris Paribusiness: On the Power of Salient Exceptions

In Fabrizio Macagno & Alessandro Capone (eds.), Inquiries in Philosophical Pragmatics: Issues in Linguistics. Springer. pp. 7-31 (2021)
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Abstract

For over four decades feminist linguists and philosophers of language have addressed the semantic, cognitive, and political factors associated with gender asymmetries in nominal and pronominal choice. The sociolinguistic spotlight has focused on the history, extent, and implications of the prescriptively sanctioned use of man and he for sex-neutral reference—he/man language in Martyna ’s term. Bare singular and simple indefinite man in exemplify this use, while the bare singulars in yield the male-specific meaning exhibited by the man or that man.

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