When I Write, Does That Tell You What Sex I Am?

Tonight I want to discuss something that I noticed that I did today without even realizing it. I was reading an article today and I assumed that the author of this article was female, without even looking at the author’s name or anything. Once I realized I did this, the first thought was why it even mattered, but the second and to me the more intriguing one was, Why did I decide the author was female?

This wasn’t an author I had read before, the author never came out and indicated gender in her article or even an occupation that is predominantly a male or female dominated career. Is there something in the way that males and females, as a whole, write that indicates our sex, what about sexual orientation or even what is our cultural background. I do know that scientists who study handwriting, a field called graphology, imply that they can determine a person’s sex based on the handwriting. But here we are talking about something that has been typed on a computer and even professionally edited. There have been a great many studies that observe the differences in how men and women communicate, but most of those have been in relation to verbal and non-verbal, what about the written form of communication. Is there a difference in the way that men and women write. This is an interesting question and one that I am not prepared to answer just yet. So I intend to research this some more, however if you have any comments, post away and I will try to respond to your ideas about this issue before I next speak on it.

Justin Yost is a full-time Software Engineer and a part time educator. A graduate of Texas Tech University with a bachelor's degree in computer science, Justin relishes programming and learning more about anything and everything. When not working, Justin occasionally gives talks at the local PHP Meetup. In his free time, Justin enjoys backpacking and reading science fiction books.


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