PC brigade declare the end of mankind: University bans lecturers from using series of phrases that could be deemed sexist
- Lecturers have been banned from terms such as 'mankind' and 'man-made'
- A new guide also suggests the term 'Christian name' should no longer be used
- Wheelchair bound and housewife have also been placed on the banned list
- Even homosexual is seen as offensive as well as the term sportsmanship
Lecturers have been banned from using the phrases ‘mankind’ and ‘man-made’ as part of a university’s clampdown on ‘gendered language’.
Cardiff Metropolitan University says the ‘politically correct’ words should be used to ‘promote an atmosphere in which all students and staff feel valued’.
The rules are laid out in the institution’s Equal Opportunities Policy, which warns contraventions could result in disciplinary action.
University lecturers have been warned college students have to be protected against previously innocuous words which are now deemed as offensive such as 'sportsmanlike'
It says ‘inclusive language’ must be used throughout all academic programmes to comply with the Equality Act as gendered words could be considered discriminatory.
Other rules include using ‘forename’ instead of ‘Christian name’ to avoid offending people of a diverse range of faiths.
And staff should avoid using the phrase ‘wheelchair bound’ because it is ‘patronising and pitying’, while ‘wheelchair user’ is ‘empowering’.
The document states: ‘Should individuals consider that in the course of interaction with students or staff that this code has not been adhered to and that further action is required, there are two courses of action.
‘For students please refer to the Bullying and Harassment Policy. For staff members the Disciplinary procedure applies, as it does in the event of students talking inappropriately to staff.’
It says that ‘politically correct terminology can change’ but lists a range of examples of words and phrases which staff should avoid.
These also include ‘best man for the job’, ‘forefathers’, ‘housewife’, ‘man in the street’, ‘manpower’ and ‘right-hand man’.
Even terms such as ‘headmistress’ and ‘headmaster’ as well as Mrs and Miss are considered offensive, according to the guide.
It also says staff should avoid ‘falling into the trap of making assumptions based on your own cultural background.’
And it advises alternating the order of the genders when talking about women and men, he or she, mother and father so that neither are given undue importance.
It adds: ‘If the gender of the person is unknown, don’t make an assumption, but use “he or she” or, where appropriate, use the plural “they”.
‘Sexuality can be a minefield too, according to the policy, which advises against the terms ‘homosexual’ and ‘heterosexual’ because they are ‘laden with the values of a previous time’.
The new words to use are ‘same-sex’ and ‘other-sex’ relationships, the documents advises.
For disability, ‘the disabled’ is advised against and instead staff should refer to ‘people with disability’.
However, the policy adds: ‘Don’t be too anxious about the use of language, though.
‘Blind people do use terms like “see you later” and being too careful can make conversation painful for both parties.’
It emerged amid growing concerns about a culture of censorship of normal language in universities across the country.
Critics warn that it is breeding a ‘snowflake’ generation who demand ‘safe spaces’ from ideas they might find offensive.
They have questioned how such students will be able to deal with the hazards of the real world when they emerge.
A spokesperson for Cardiff Metropolitan University said: ‘The University is committed unreservedly to the principle of academic freedom within the law.
‘It is also committed to providing an environment where everyone is valued and treated with dignity and respect. These two commitments are cornerstones of academic life at the University.
‘The Code of Practice on Using Inclusive Language sets out a broad approach to promoting fairness and equality through raising awareness about the effects of potentially discriminatory vocabulary.
‘In particular, it includes some suggestions to support gender equality; these are consistent with other guidance (e.g., British Sociological Association’s information on Equality and Diversity).’