What do we mean by Female and Male in Neurocognitive Experiments on Language?

Kaiser Trujillo, Anelis Carolina (14 June 2013). What do we mean by Female and Male in Neurocognitive Experiments on Language? In: Final Conference of the Marie Curie Initial Training Network Language, Cognition, and Gender (ITN LCG). Universität Bern

For several years now, neuroscientific research has been striving towards fundamental answers to questions about the relevance of sex/gender to language processing in the brain. This research has been effected through the search for sex/gender differences in the neurobiology of language processing. Thus, the main aim has ever been to focus on the differentiation of the sexes/genders, failing to define what sex, what gender, what female or male is in neurolingustic research. In other words, although neuroscientific findings have provided key insights into the brain functioning of women and men, neuropsychology has rarely questioned the complexity of the sex/gender variable beyond biology. What does “female” or “male” mean in human neurocognition; how are operationalisations implemented along the axes of “femaleness” or “maleness”; or what biological evidence is used to register the variables sex and/or gender? In the neurosciences as well as in neurocognitive research, questions such as these have so far not been studied in detail, even if they are highly significant for the scientific process. Instead, the variable of sex/gender has always been thought as solely dichotomous (as either female or male), oppositional and exclusionary of each other. Here, this theoretical contribution sets in.
Based on findings in neuroscience and concepts in gender theory, this poster is dedicated to the reflection about what sex/gender is in the neuroscience of language processing. Following this aim, two levels of interest will be addressed. First: How do we define sex/gender at the level of participants? And second: How do we define sex/gender at the level of the experimental task? For the first, a multifactorial registration (work in progress) of the variable sex/gender will be presented, i.e. a tool that records sex/gender in terms of biology and social issues as well as on a spectrum between femaleness and maleness. For the second, the compulsory dichotomy of a gendered task when neurolinguistically approaching our cognitions of sex/gender will be explored.

Item Type:

Conference or Workshop Item (Poster)


07 Faculty of Human Sciences > Institute of Psychology > Social Neuroscience and Social Psychology

UniBE Contributor:

Kaiser Trujillo, Anelis Carolina


300 Social sciences, sociology & anthropology


Universität Bern




Irène Gonce-Gyr

Date Deposited:

06 Oct 2014 07:19

Last Modified:

06 Oct 2014 07:19



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