TechWhirl (TECHWR-L) is a resource for technical writing and technical communications professionals of all experience levels and in all industries to share their experiences and acquire information.
For two decades, technical communicators have turned to TechWhirl to ask and answer questions about the always-changing world of technical communications, such as tools, skills, career paths, methodologies, and emerging industries. The TechWhirl Archives and magazine, created for, by and about technical writers, offer a wealth of knowledge to everyone with an interest in any aspect of technical communications.
Subject:Re: Help Systems & Gender Differences From:Karen Kay <karenk -at- NETCOM -dot- COM> Date:Mon, 11 Apr 1994 10:44:33 -0700
Mike Pope said:
> >Some of it is phonological, too.
> Grammatical, too: diminuitive suffix in German gets you a neuter gender,
> thus the non-intuitive gender of "girl" and "miss". Or is that what you
No, I'd call that morphological. I thought about throwing that
in, but decided to simplify. You're right, though, that in languages
that mark gender, more is going on than the obvious-human-gender-type
stuff, and that's what I meant to indicate but didn't succeed.
> Who knows? Anyway, if you buy this theory, then yes, gender is a
> "basic human need" that would now have been superseded by new,
> improved ways to indicate grammatical functions of nouns.
Hm. So languages that don't mark gender? How do you account for
them? Or languages that have 20 or so noun classes?