Современные тенденции в концептуализации гендера и их отражение в британской толковой лексикографии
The aim of this article is to identify how modern English-language dictionaries reflect the recent shift in the conceptualization and categorization of gender caused by the changes in gender theory, gender ideology and social transformations. The need to address this topic is driven by the fact that, in the Anglophone academic discourse and everyday life, the binary structure of the gender is no longer considered the norm and gender-neutral communication practices are gaining in scale. The study focuses on various structural components of entries from the latest editions of five major British dictionaries for EFL students (‘the Big Five’): Oxford Advanced Learner’s Dictionary (OALD), Cambridge Learner’s Dictionary (CLD), Longman Dictionary of Contemporary English (LDOCE), Macmillan English Dictionary for Advanced Learners (MEDAL), and Collins English Dictionary (CED). To identify the shifts in the recording of gender relevant information, the authors analyzed the headwords of dictionary entries, definitions, illustrative examples, gender relevant usage notes, and non-sexist language guidelines. Illustrative examples were also selected from dictionary entries thematically related to issues of family, marriage and sexual relations, as well as to the topics of discrimination, debate, (in)tolerance, and prejudice. The authors used definitional analysis and semantic interpretation to achieve the aim. The findings were then compared with the results of an earlier study on the construction of gender in the first (1948) and fifth (2005) editions of OALD. The study demonstrates that in modern lexicography deconstruction of gender stereotypes has become even more pronounced than in the dictionaries published at the beginning of the century. Different elements of dictionary entries emphasize such issues as women’s rights campaigning and elimination of gender discrimination in all its forms. New types of masculinity are represented in various entry components. The ideas of gender fluidity and same-sex relations have become much more prominent than in the 2000s. Along with recording traditional gender representations, modern dictionaries tend to consistently avoid the implications of heteronormativity and heterosexuality by recognizing multiple gender identities. This tendency is registered in all structural components of the analyzed dictionaries. New types of communicative practices that stem from the changes in gender conceptualization, such as ‘preferred pronouns’ and others, are reflected in illustrative examples and by the new coinages used as headwords. The major trends affecting the way gender ideology is reflected in modern dictionaries include digitalization of lexicographic practices, increased role of corpora as a source of illustrative examples, and democratization of dictionary making process by registering new coinages, particularly gender relevant ones, submitted by the users.