This article is a bit dated, but it’s also still relevant and it makes some good points in easy-to-understand ways. Worth remembering and sharing, especially for discussions of equity.
“. . . how can we gain a deeper understanding of where we personally stand on the issue of equality? . . . ”
I had to video myself talking recently and was shocked at how much I say, “um.” This realization let me to this article, which offers some really helpful advice. But, it also gave me a lightning-strike moment re: gender and rhetoric with this line: “we use “um” and “ah” to hold onto the “conversational floor” as we are planning what we are going to say next.” I already knew that women tend to hedge and use filler words more than men, and I suddenly realized that I, personally, do absolutely use “um” to hold the floor. Because if I don’t, I am constantly interrupted. I tried, once, to count how many times I was interrupted in a day … and I gave up. (To be clear, I was interrupted at least as often by women as men. I’m not saying men are interrupters, necessarily. Rather, that in my experience, we all are enculturated to think it’s okay to interrupt women.) So … still searching for strategies to claim rhetorical space with resorting to holding the floor with um. Um, sigh.
This is a few months old, but an excellent read:
“Self-interrogation is a good place to start. If you see inequality as a “them” problem or “unfortunate other” problem, that is a problem. Being able to attend to not just unfair exclusion but also, frankly, unearned inclusion is part of the equality gambit.”
As COVID-19 continues to spread, I’ve been really impressed with one particular piece of technical communication. This chart has shown up in a number of places, and it’s the sort of visual representation that can really make a difference for audiences. When I saw it, I thought, “Oh–I get it now. Slowing the virus down actually lessens its impact.” This is some smart work.