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Language, Heart, and Mind

Studies at the intersection of emotion and cognition


Edited By Barbara Lewandowska-Tomaszczyk, Valeria Monello and Marco Venuti

A major premise of this book is that language use is critically conditioned by affective content and cognitive factors rather than being a case of objective computation and manipulation of structures. The 21 chapters of this book deals with how language interacts with emotion, and with mind and cognition, from both intralingual and cross-linguistic perspectives. The second major focus is the theoretical framework, best-suited for research relationships between language, cognition, and emotion as well as the effect that emotion has on the conceptualizer who constructs meanings based on language stimuli. Furthermore, the authors investigate how emotion and rational projections of events interact and what their consequences are in the conceptual world, media discourse, and translation.

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15. Inclusive (and Not) Uses of Pronouns and Honorifics in the British Press (Angela Zottola)


Angela Zottola

Abstract This chapter discusses the use of pronouns and honorifics in the British press with reference to transgender people. The study considers articles produced by eight national newspapers between 2013 and 2015 and addresses a comparison between the popular and quality press. The study highlights that gender-neutral honorifics are rarely found in the press, and those few occurrences of the terms mainly refer to articles that explain the function of such terms. The study also shows that the singular they is used in similar contexts. As for feminine and masculine pronouns, the study highlights that newspaper have a tendency to use pronouns in an inconsistent way, following the person’s biological sex and personal life narrative rather than the pronouns that best reflect the identifying gender of the individual.

Keywords: Transgender identity, Non-binary, Pronouns, British press, Inclusive language

“WIKILEAK BRAD IS A TRAIT-HER”. This headlined appeared on The Sun on August 23rd, 2013 (Sabey, 2013 p. 29). The article was written after former US transgender soldier Chelsea Manning was condemned for leaking classified documents to the multi-national media organization WikiLeaks. This case attracted attention worldwide not only for the gravity of the acts Manning was accused of, but – as this headline aims at underlining – also due to the fact that Chelsea Manning is a transgender woman. At the beginning of her trial Chelsea was sentenced to jail and, despite her requests, incarcerated in a male prison. This was not the only transphobic act...

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