While I agree that the "chairman" thing is irritating, I think that it is
probably not worth making a big deal about in terms of getting other people
to agree with you. The way I deal with it is to make sure that I use the
term I prefer without backing down.
Anita Vasavada wrote:
> Women-in-bio newsgroup:
>> I would like to get your opinions on the general acceptance of the words
> chair vs. chairman (for the head of a department or program). I
> personally find the word chairman irritatingwhy the need to point out
> that the chairman is a man?and feel chair is much more appropriate.
> My institution always uses the gender-neutral term chair. But
> occasionally I get mail from one of my previous institutions, or a
> national professional organization, that has a message from the
> chairman, or a list of chairmen of a specific type of academic program
> (some of whom happen to be women).
>> I am often tempted to write in to these organizations and point this
> out. However I wonder: Am I over-reacting? Is the word chairman
> generally accepted to mean both men and women? Should I avoid making a
> fuss over a minor issue and pick different battles to fight (especially
> if it means irritating a big shot in the field)?
>> Id love to hear your opinionsit will help me decide whether to bring
> up these issues.
> Anita Vasavada
> Anita Vasavada, Ph.D.
> Assistant Professor
> Departments of Biological Systems Engineering and VCAPP
> Washington State University
> Pullman, WA 99164-6120
> voice: (509) 335-7533
> fax: (509) 335-4650
>vasavada at wsu.edu