Soraya Chemaly writes, "it's not hard to fathom why so many men tend to assume they are great and that what they have to say is more legitimate. It starts in childhood and never ends. Parents interrupt girls twice as often and hold them to stricter politeness norms. Teachers engage boys, who correctly see disruptive speech as a marker of dominant masculinity, more often and more dynamically than girls... As adults, women's speech is granted less authority and credibility. We aren't thought of as able critics or as funny. Men speak more, more often, and longer than women in mixed groups (classrooms, boardrooms, legislative bodies, expert media commentary and, for obvious reasons religious institutions.) Indeed, in male-dominated problem solving groups including boards, committees and legislatures, men speak 75% more than women, with negative effects on decisions reached. That's why, as researchers summed up, 'Having a seat at the table is not the same as having a voice.'"
She goes on to say, "the best part though is that we are socialized to think women talk more. Listener bias results in most people thinking that women are hogging the floor when men are actually dominating. Linguists have concluded that much of what is popularly understood about women and men being from different planets, verbally, confuses 'women's language' with 'powerless language.'"
Ms. Chemaly finishes by writing, "in general, I'm loathe to take the approach that girls should be responsible for the world's responses to them, but I say to them, practice these words, every day: Stop interrupting me, I just said that, and No explanation needed. It will do both boys and girls a world of good. And no small number of adults, as well."