Merging the female into the male, in the language of Virginia Woolf and James Joyce. The case of The Waves and A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man


This article explores the suggestion made by some scholars and researchers according to whom it is more appropriate to speak of gender-preferential rather than of gender exclusive features in the use women and men make of language, since members of both sexes are endowed with the same neuro-cognitive apparatus to acquire it. By comparing passages from two modernist novels, Virginia Woolf’s The Waves and James Joyce’s A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man, the article discusses whether and how features usually associated with female authors may merge with those preferentially associated with male ones.

DOI Code: 10.1285/i22390359v28p211

Keywords: acquisition; gender; Modernism; semiotic language; Linguistics


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