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More important than individual studies into genderlect are these four different approaches to gender;
The Deficit approach compares women to men based on the assumption that women’s language is inferior to men’s.
The Dominance approach starts from the assumption that male dominance in society (or patriarchy) creates differences between the genders.
The Difference approach argues that men and women have different aims in conversation, because they have different values.
The Diversity approach (based on Deborah Cameron’s The Myth of Mars and Venus) presents gender as just one aspect of identity amongst many, and reminds us that there can be as many differences between two women as between a man and a woman.