From the World of Conscious Language

Note: The authors’ viewpoints are not necessarily shared by Conscious Style Guide.

Here’s Why We Stopped Italicizing “Foreign” Foods | Los Angeles Times

“Many writers, me included, believe that the words we choose to italicize—and thereby highlight as ‘foreign’—can have an ‘othering’ effect.”

Merriam-Webster Is Reviewing a Racist Entry in Their Dictionary | Changing America

“Studies have tried and failed to establish any connection between those symptoms and MSG…But the damage had been done, and Chinese restaurants were associated with heavy use of MSG and, by extension, Chinese restaurant syndrome.”

Asians Are Good at Math? Why Dressing Up Racism as a Compliment Just Doesn’t Add Up | The Conversation

Jokes about Asians being good at math “might seem funny at first, but the underlying message is clear: Asian people aren’t seen as human beings; they are calculating machines…In other words, they are dehumanized.”

Don’t Yuck My Yum: Kids Books That Dismantle Orientalism & Food Shaming | Books for Littles

“Books to start conversations about unpacking Orientalism and othering—as well as a few tropes to avoid.”

Techno-Orientalism in Science Fiction | Chloe Gong

“The hope is to overrule the very core xenophobia that centers the Western fear instead of the Asian body. Give Asians a sense of humanity again, and cyberpunk might get a second life that actually respects all its readers.”

Capital-B “Black” Becomes Standard Usage at The Seattle Times | The Seattle Times

“It is increasingly clear this is the preferred term among many Black publications and presses. It seems appropriate and respectful for us to follow suit.” —Ray Rivera, managing editor, The Seattle Times


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New Sections on Conscious Style Guide!

Two new sections have been added to Conscious Style Guide: Socioeconomic Status and Teaching Children.
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The Sound of Silence: Strategic Amplification | American Press Institute

Strategies for covering falsehoods without amplifying them, including the “truth sandwich” and clearly labeling misinformation.

Climate Change: Should We Change the Terminology? | Science Focus

“The term ‘climate change’, while scientifically accurate, doesn’t necessarily communicate that regular people actually need to do anything.”

“Car Accident” or “Traffic Violence”? The Way We Talk About Crashes Is Evolving | LAist

“Across the nation, activists have been using a term other than ‘accident’ to emphasize the death toll in local streets and in cities: traffic violence.”

What’s in a Title? When It Comes to “Doctor,” More Than You Might Think | The Conversation

In a recent study, women speakers introduced by men were far less likely to be addressed by their professional titles (49.2%) than were men introduced by men (72%) or any speaker introduced by women (96.2%).

Masculine, Feminist or Neutral? The Language Battle That Has Split Spain | The Guardian

“Rewriting the constitution to be more inclusive would entail replacing about 500 words and considerable doubling up, starting with ‘Spanish citizens’—ciudadanos/ciudadanas españoles/españolas.”

CSG in the News

New Year, New Use (of Conscious Language) | Rabbit with a Red Pen

Thank you, Crystal Shelley, for featuring Conscious Style Guide in your editorial perspective on conscious language! “It’s about how to use words intentionally to create an authentic, representative, and thought-provoking story.”

From the Archives

What Needs to Change | Conscious Style Guide

The consequences for editors of being invisible.

In Case You Missed It

December 2019 Newsletter

Reclaiming the “OK” gesture, designing better algorithms, and the potential of “y’all”―read about these topics and more from the world of conscious language.

Diversify Your Sources

The Editors of Color Databasea project of Conscious Style Guide, is a free service that connects employers and recruiters with editors, proofreaders, and sensitivity readers of color in the U.S. and Canada. Also home to the Database of Diverse Databases, now with 70 resources featuring underrepresented communities!

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Conscious Language in Fiction?

Follow @consciousstyleguide on Instagram for examples of how context can support sensitive content, with a focus on young-adult books and kidlit.

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The Conscious Style Guide newsletter rounds up the best news and blog posts from the world of kind, compassionate, mindful, empowering, respectful, and inclusive language. Note: Spotlighting an opinion is not intended as an endorsement. Please send news tips to .

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