Referring to Women as “Females” is Derogatory

Difference between 'woman' and 'female'


TNI Bureau: We often use the terms ‘women’ and ‘female’ synonymously. Although they are similar, if we look at their definitions we will find that there is a difference.

A female is described as, denoting the sex that can bear offspring or produce eggs. However, we all know that a woman is an adult female human being.

So when we refer to a woman as ‘female’, we are reducing her to her reproductive parts and abilities, which is dehumanizing and derogatory. It shifts away the focus from the personal onto her qualities as an object.

Moreover, not all women are biologically female and with the misuse of the term, we erase gender-nonconforming people and members of the Trans community.

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It is grammatically wrong as well. The word female is an adjective but when we use it as a noun, the subject we’re referring to gets erased. Because a female can be in reference to any species, but a ‘woman’ refers specifically to human beings.

Therefore, we must use the term ‘female’ with a subject like “female doctor” only when it is required for context such as “the first female doctor” otherwise, she’s just a doctor.

Usually, when someone wants to express their disregard or disdain towards women they refer to them as females. For it implies inferiority and contempt and strips them of their value and personhood because when used as a noun it is a misogynistic word. That’s why we will never find anyone referring to men as “males”.

So let’s never make this mistake because by social construct it is degrading.

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