Gender Inequality and Language Reflections in African Indigenous Languages: Comparative Cases from IsiZulu and Kiswahili
‘A movie starring Ben Stiller, got laughs nationwide for presenting a main character, who was a male nurse. The fact that a male pursuing a career in nursing still seems laughable shows how ingrained some gender roles still are’ (Herzfeld & Hamburg 2000). Using Bonilla-Silver’s (2006) framework, which has four components but in this particular study only three components will be considered: naturalization, minimization, and culture will be applied, authors have adopted the documentary research method to discuss and reflect on gender inequality in IsiZulu and Kiswahili as African indigenous languages. Also, the paper discusses how IsiZulu and Kiswahili languages enhance such inequality through words or phrases. The paper concludes with recommendations for reducing if not entirely eradicating gender inequalities in both languages. The paper advances that the desired change among members of society can only take place through provision of adequate knowledge and information. This in turn might help females and males to be persuaded, motivated and inspired to engage in cultural and social principles that enhance gender equalities. Thus, the method and messages of enhancing gender equality among female(s) and male(s) are of utmost importance.