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womens high pitch: social construction to infer submission

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Matt
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studying sociology and sociolinguistics is screwing my brain up. so much stuff we all think are physical facts that are nothing but cultural labels and constructions. Anyway, mildly related to this forum, I thought this was quite interesting:

“That’s the point about the adaption process. Their effects, which are effects of modernity, overall effects - for example, that women’s voices have changed – that was so amazing to see, for me. As you know, I’m also a trained mediator and I do training in communication, negotiation, mediation for lawyers and the judiciary, and this has made me study voices too, and these days, women talk with deeper voices which, for me, was part of this adaptation process”

So, even the gender bound pitch of our voices is, to at least a degree, a cultural power game...

* Schultz, U. (2011). Professor Håkan Hydén talks to: Professor Ulrike Schultz, Senior Academic at the Faculty of Law, FernUniversität, Hagen. (H. Hydén, Interviewer) University of Lund.

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i get these macho types that come in my store with these gravelly voices, and i say to myself, is this intentional or maybe they just have polyps, or are headed towards polyps. i personally listen to people's speaking voices much more than i used to.

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From what Ive been taught (and the evidence is overwhelming), they have simply bought into stereotypes of what they want to be (must add that Ive never met exactly those people youre talking about though :P)

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definitely lol. Just like women speak in high pitched cute voices to show unthreatening femininity - or what signals to us males unthreatening femininity. A woman speaking in a cutey pie voice has also bought into the stereotypes. But as they become more equal in society, their voices drop...connecting this to singing, take the example of graham bonnet, who grew up singing female vocal parts...how much of our register limits are simply cultural? Not all of it, but probably quite a lot

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This is an interesting point. It makes sense that as women begin to take on/desire traditionally male roles (CEOs, Managers, etc) that they would take on a more serious tone in their voice. It could be a form of compensation - a way of asserting status. I've noticed that girls who are more feminist tend to have that deeper tone, as opposed to the ditzy squeak on the other side of the spectrum. Though, I don't think these generally fit the amazonian description that Bob mentioned.

Men do this too, lowering their voices to appear tougher, or more manly, or more serious. I remember one of the first times I ordered a drink at a bar it came out super-low. Sub-consciously, I think I was trying to assert age and maturity. In reality, my friends just laughed at me.

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i absoluely agree with this. i have been doing these frisell exercises and i embrace the feminine sound that comes out. i feel like the feminine soprano-ish sound takes the voice to a different place, a different place of resonance too.

back to voice types...just listen to a porn star talk....they almost always sound the same.....they love saying "oh yaaaaah baby"...lol!!

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Im not even going to get into how women supposedly have to have completely bought into male stereotypes of what a woman should be to do, and even enjoy, porn...or the way we have sex is a cultural construction too...

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Interesting topic.

I've always been aware that I try to lower my voice specifically when talking on the phone, but oddly, almost never when face to face with someone.

lol!!! can't blame you. the sad thing is some of these girls are far from stupid....

True, although the vast majority in the business end up making stupid choices that lead them to pissing away a lot of their earnings, and not really becoming as successful as they could have. Asia Carerra is one of the exceptions. She's actually a Mensa member and quite the businesswoman.

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actually, I used the term stereotypes incorrectly, just to keep things simple. 'Types' are multifacetted images of people who have the 'correct morals' (norms), according to society, and 'stereotypes' are 'the others,' the ones who we categorize in a much more simplified way that do something deviant, according to social norms. And we all change our accents all the time, depending on who we talk to.Validar, youre probably doing something like, in the absence of body language and facial mimicry to show youre serious, representing that with a 'serious' voice. We all do shit like this all the time.

Sorry, getting off track here

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Darn it, Jens, your comment about muting made me nearly lose my train of thought.

Anyway, I have found singing much easier once I let go of the need to try and sound like a baritone on stuff. When I just let my voice go, it is high and bright and rings and vibrates my eyeballs. The hardest part of that? Changing my mind to realize that I don't have to sound "macho" to sing, as a man.

Singing is mental.

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Interestingly enough, a lot of sub-Saharan tribes consider falsetto hollers (the very same that evolved into field hollers) to be a display of masculinity.

The problem with norms, and this is a stupendous mammoth of a problem connected to racism and other forms of exclusionary hatred, is that norms dont have to have a shred of rationality to them at all to be accepted, they just need to be mutually recognized and thus shared within a culture, to work as a norm (e.g. the glue that holds communities together and seperates 'us' from 'them')

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The problem with norms, and this is a stupendous mammoth of a problem connected to racism and other forms of exclusionary hatred, is that norms dont have to have a shred of rationality to them at all to be accepted, they just need to be mutually recognized and thus shared within a culture, to work as a norm (e.g. the glue that holds communities together and seperates 'us' from 'them')

Ah, well at least I have consistency. I am the black sheep regardless of what group I am in. Well, except for that one group. The group that is on the highway to Hell. But then, we don't pay attention to one another, preferring to center our thoughts upon ourselves.

:D

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I've read articles which suggest some research shows that men and women can fairly accurately judge how attractive a person is by their voice. An interesting thought, because as singers aren't we really constantly trying to change our voices? "Discover our own voice" = a better voice! :D Certainly I've noticed that the more time I spend singing higher; far away from the A2ish area my my voice used to inhabit, I now speak more tenor-like around C3. Good or bad? Who knows.

I do tend to find that women I am attracted to have voices which I also find attractive. But maybe that's a case of having already formed that connection, and then being reminded of it by hearing their voice, whether on the phone, across the room, or face-to-face.

edit: grammar

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I've read articles which suggest some research shows that men and women can fairly accurately judge how attractive a person is by their voice. An interesting thought, because as singers aren't we really constantly trying to change our voices? "Discover our own voice" = a better voice! :D Certainly I've noticed that the more time I spend singing higher; far away from the A2ish area my my voice used to inhabit, I now speak more tenor-like around C3. Good or bad? Who knows.

I do tend to find that women I am attracted to have voices which I also find attractive. But maybe that's a case of having already formed that connection, and then being reminded of it by hearing their voice, whether on the phone, across the room, or face-to-face.

edit: grammar

Then I must be the exception to the rule. :/

A light voice like mine, yet I look like a Hell's Angel who cleaned up for court appearance. 40-something miles of bad road. I've seen pictures of myself. I certainly wouldn't want to meet me on the street. But I do agree about the voice thing making someone "sound" attractive.

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they say that elvis presley would likely never have acheived that level of stardom had he not been a real handsome dude and made to look more handsome with all the makeup and all.

they say another key to his attraction was the bad boy look, but with the little boy vulnerability. elvis needed to be perceived as real and approachable and that was what drew people to him.

i truly believe that's what adam lambert lacks. lambert came on to america too fast and cocksure with not much hint of humility. he'll have a core audience, but he was trying to overtake icons like elvis, too fast, and the public said no...i doubt if lambert will go much further without a strategic image restortion by some skilled pr man.

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they say that elvis presley would likely never have acheived that level of stardom had he not been a real handsome dude and made to look more handsome with all the makeup and all.

they say another key to his attraction was the bad boy look, but with the little boy vulnerability. elvis needed to be perceived as real and approachable and that was what drew people to him.

I think I would agree with this. Elvis was more than just a singer.

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yes, perception is a hard thing to control. that's why these actors and singers have pr people and image consultants. they have to teeter on the edge of success and failure one movie or one song at a time.

whitney houston had to have been utterly mortified deep inside as she tried to come to terms with her loss of vocal skill. i'm sure this was a hard pill to swallow.

or those childhood sitcom actors that lose any chance because they're stereotyped into obscurity. my heart always went out to those young kids. in a teen magazine and everyone lusts for you one day and they can't remmeber your name the next.

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Then, there's Axl Rose, who just turned 50. He's put on a few pounds, prefers button down shirts and vests and fedoras and doesn't give a flying whatever if someone likes what he wears, or not. For he still delivers the performance. Then, again, he's always been a singer, rather than an image.

On the other side of that equation is Ozzy. He still wears goth and doesn't care if it's out of style, or not. He's the Prince of Darkness and can wear whatever he pleases.

I remember the uproar when James Hetfield and Lars Ulrich cut their hair. Kirk Hammett still has his long, black curly mane. Robert Trujillo, the young'n, still has that long tail.

So, if I was on the show "Rock and Roll Fantasy Camp," the first thing I would do is pop Mark Hudson in the mouth. Then, get up, with my wallet on the chain, and my jean jacket with the Harley patches on it, and launch into "I Believe in a thing Called Love" by the Darkness. Because I likes me some irony.

:)

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