Deborah Tannen

Essay by PaperNerd ContributorCollege, Undergraduate October 2001

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Tannen and Ploetz have two different views on men and women's communication patterns. Tannen takes an apolitical stance and believes men "report talk" and women "rapport talk". Ploetz believes "men take a more political stance and use dominant speech acts, like commands, orders, challenges, and criticism. While women defend, ask for favors, beg, request permission, and ask someone else's perspective on the situation". In my opinion I think men and women have the power to communicate on an equal level. Men just tend to take a more aggressive approach. (Tannen pg. 9, Ploetz pg. 68) Tannen believes "men and women were raised in two different cultures. She believes that there is a male culture where men learn to speak like men and a female culture where you learn to speak like a woman". Ploetz thinks men and women can understand and communicate on the same level quite well. I totally agree, if we were in the late 1950's when things were a lot different I could relate.

Now in 2001 woman and men have equal opportunity and the same status, yes the table still turns toward the men, but women have come a long way and gained much respect. (Tannen pg. 9) Ploetz says, "men tend to dominate in their conversations", while Tannen says "men express ignorance, selfishness, and rudeness". I don't think Tannen is correct. Yes, when men speak its more of a status symbol, usually the man doing all the talking is running the show but I don't think that shows any signs of being ignorant, selfish, or rude. (Ploetz pg. 69,73) Tannen believes "men report and are interested in a different goal, the solution of problems". I think Tannen is correct, men do tend to report but that's because men and woman are not miscommunicating...