Editor's Note: This is a new version of a previously announced book.
Gender and Politeness challenges the notion that women are necessarily
always more polite than men as much of the language and gender literature
claims. Sara Mills discusses the complex relations between gender and
politeness and argues that although there are circumstances when women
speakers, drawing on stereotypes of femininity to guide their behaviour,
will appear to be acting in a more polite way than men, there are many
circumstances where women will act just as impolitely as men. The book aims
to show that politeness and impoliteness are in essence judgements about
another’s interventions in an interaction and about that person as whole,
and are not simple classifications of particular types of speech. Drawing
on the notion of community of practice Mills examines the way that speakers
negotiate with what they perceive to be gendered stereotypes circulating
within their particular group.