The Gendered Sentence
DOI link for The Gendered Sentence
The Gendered Sentence book
One of the debates which is of long standing within feminist literary analysis is concerned with whether women writers produce texts which are significantly different in terms of language from those of males.1 This debate began with the work of Virginia Woolf when she asserted that there was a sentence which women writers had developed which she termed the ‘female sentence’ or the ‘sentence of the feminine gender’ (Woolf 1929 ). For Woolf, certain women writers crafted a new type of sentence which is looser and more accretive than the male sentence. This view that women’s writing is fundamentally different from men’s seems to be echoed in the more recent statements by French feminists such as Luce Irigaray and Hélène Cixous (Irigaray 1985; Cixous 1976). Both Woolf and some French feminists assert that there is a difference between men’s and women’s writing, but their discussions frequently remain at a rather abstract level, since they rarely give concrete examples.