Still a Man's World: Sexism in the Legal Field



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Modern sexism is very different than the sexism of the past. Modern sexism tends to be much more subtle such as simple word choice or associations. This study tries to observe such acts of sexism specifically in the courtroom. This is a qualitative study that looks largely at word usage and the interaction between the different genders and different positions held in the courtroom. A select number of transcripts were collected from the legal research service, Westlaw, and reviewed for events of sexism. The study found little to no examples of direct sexism. However, the use of gendered or sexist terms was observed. A trend for women in the courtroom to be more likely involved in combative interactions was also noted. The number of women involved in the proceedings reviewed factored into the results as well.



Sexism, Legal field, Profession, Gender, Word choice, Courtroom, Attorneys, Judges, Lawyers