Gendered Language in Interviews: How Gender Matters in Interpreting and Communication

Name of Award

APDC Faculty Research & Scholarly Activities Grant

Date Awarded




Project Description

Elizabeth Otto, Assistant Professor of Communication Studies, received $7,492 to identify gendered language variables in English interpretations of a Deaf jobs candidate’s American Sign Language (ASL) answers to employment interview questions via Video Relay Service (VRS). This study proposes to demonstrate that interpretations are a site for examining gendered language in employment interviews separate from non-linguistic markers of gender. By studying the gendered language markers embedded in the English interpretation of ASL answers to interview questions, we can examine the impact of gendered language in shaping meaning in an employment interview. The purpose of this examination is not to direct interpreters to stop using gendered language. Instead, the goal is to highlight how gendered language, especially feminine language, is judged and pathologized. This recognition of gender bias is a first step in explicitly identifying the impact of that bias.

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