My pet peeve

Women being called “females.”

The word “female” is a perfectly good word. Female characters, female chefs, female humans. But it’s an adjective, not a noun. Unless you were trying to be really dehumanizing.

Female humans are called women and girls. I might let it slide for fandoms where you’re not dealing with humans or humanoids, but like, even for My Little Pony or something I’d prefer “mares” to “females.” Or just “female ponies.” Adjective. Not noun.

When a woman tries to tell me she doesn’t have internalized sexism and then calls herself “a female” or says things like, “Korra doesn’t have good relationships with females her own age,” I have trouble paying attention to the rest of her sentence because my brain is just like, wow, way to make our entire gender into some kind of alien species.

And no, “a male” doesn’t make it any better, and I sort of kneejerk at that too because pretty much the only time you see it is in relation to female-as-noun. Besides, it’s still gross and dehumanizing, even if it doesn’t have the greater context of institutionalized oppression to make it stand out.

That’s like, how cops talk. And cops do it deliberately to dehumanize you. They’re not harassing a woman, they’re harassing a female. They’re not beating a teenager, they’re beating a juvenile. They uses these cold, vaguely-scientific-sounding classifications to avoid thinking of people as people. To put themselves in a separate group from them, as the scientists, the ones doing the classification of the wild beasts.

  1. jetpackangel reblogged this from hotrodngold
  2. drisley reblogged this from mox2y5
  3. hotrodngold reblogged this from aiffe and added:
    Again, I agree (though I wish these terms weren’t quite so sterile), but I think this is where you and I were speaking...
  4. amandaonmaui reblogged this from courtneystoker and added:
    Guilty. Thanks for bringing this to my attention. It’s kind of an interesting time to point this out as I am in a course...
  5. thatonedeadgirl reblogged this from aiffe
  6. aiffe reblogged this from thebestofallpossible and added:
    I am sorry for reblogging this thing like fifteen million times, but I really like thisfishflies’ reply, and you should...
  7. thebestofallpossible reblogged this from hotrodngold and added:
    I think, more than regional it’s a friend thing. Your friends don’t mind when you do it because they are your friends...
  8. mox2y5 reblogged this from courtneystoker and added:
    My students say this all the time, and I always stop them and make them say again with “women.” Because gross, they need...
  9. courtneystoker reblogged this from culumacilinte and added:
    My students say this all the time, and I always stop them and make them say again with “women.” Because gross, they need...
  10. atthetopofthebottom reblogged this from twoshotsofhappyoneshotofsad
  11. that-was-unexpected reblogged this from bitterseafigtree and added:
    Someone understands my pet peeve.
  12. bitterseafigtree reblogged this from culumacilinte
  13. culumacilinte reblogged this from theheroheart and added:
    Seriously, this. That is something that will make me stop reading a story immediately, just because no.
  14. kieren-fucking-walker reblogged this from twoshotsofhappyoneshotofsad
  15. twoshotsofhappyoneshotofsad reblogged this from theheroheart
  16. lojovski reblogged this from theheroheart
  17. silverilly reblogged this from mumblingsage
  18. mumblingsage reblogged this from theheroheart and added:
  19. theconsultingartist reblogged this from theheroheart
  20. hiddleswiggles reblogged this from theheroheart and added:
    I like using female at times. It’s just stating gender and you don’t need to separate whether it’s a woman,girl or old...
  21. abbsurdity reblogged this from theheroheart
  22. theheroheart reblogged this from aiffe
  23. skullopendra said: oh snap that’s a really good point I try to keep “woman”/”girl” and “female” distinct because one is a gender and the other is a sex? I think I tend to drop “female”s in conversation because of my military background tho so guilty as charged sry ):