Deborah Tannen Summary

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Deborah Tannen is an American academic and professor of linguistics at Georgetown University in Washington, D.C. Her research mainly focuses on the expression of interpersonal relationships in conversational interactions, including how these interactions are affected by gender and cultural differences. In her essay Tannen uses gender to reveal the differences between male and female conversational styles in classroom discussions. She formulates the theory that males naturally prefer and dominate contributions to these debate-like discussions while females incline to contribute to less hostile conversations. Tannen presents her argument effectively using simple vocabulary and appropriate literary devices however, as the essay progresses she detracts from the main idea and does not provide substantiated evidence validating her claim which ultimately fails to convince the audience of the…show more content…
While for boys activities play a central part in forming best friends. Their groups are large and tend to be hierarchical. To back her statements Tanner mentions anthropologists and sociologists such as “Janet Lever, Marjorie Harness Goodwin, and Donna Eder” so that the audience can find these assumptions credible. Similarly, she mentions that the regular classroom is more hospitable to males due the use of “debate-like formats” as a learning tool she adds that this is due to the fact that males appreciate arguments and challenges more than females. She backs this claim by referring to “Walter Ong” who projects the same idea that the average educational system is suited more to males. Such supports help her in convincing the audience however other arguments put forward by Tannen are backed by no such references which then fail to make any further impact on the audience and make them question the credibility of ideas

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