Most of us think of language as a kind of intellectual map. There is a thing or idea out there. A word labels the thing or idea for us so we can find it and use it.
But one author argues language does not represent anything. Rather it shapes how we understand and thing about the world. He is Shahid Siddiqui, who has just released “Language, Gender and Power: The Politics of Representation and Hegemony in South Asia.”
While the book directly address past and current issues on the subcontinent, it applies wide. Here’s one important thought:
“It [language] highlights the propagated desire of a particular kind of gender behavior and how it is injected into the viewer or reader’s mind through the strategic use of language. The specific local examples such as associating modesty or docility with women which in turn reinforces gender stereotypes, make the concepts relatable and easy to understand.”
Excellent review: http://tribune.com.pk/story/653896/book-review-language-speaks/