A cluster of bright-green makrut limes on a bamboo surface.Why We Should Examine Our Culinary Vocabulary | Conscious Style Guide

“Terminology can embed our prejudices, at least until our thinking and usage around those terms change.” This important piece on food and conscious language originally appeared on Lucky Peach, which closed last year. Our thanks to the author, Tien Nguyen, for permission to republish it.


CSG in the News

We’ve Updated Our Guidelines on Race and Ethnicity to Better Reflect Our Philosophy of Inclusivity: No More Hyphens to Denote Dual Heritage | BuzzFeed Style Guide

“No more hyphens to denote dual heritage.” Citing our article by Henry Fuhrmann, BuzzFeed Style Guide has updated its guidelines and dropping the hyphen for racial and ethnic identifiers. We’re happy to hear it—and grateful to have Henry as an adviser and writer!


Erasing Stephen Hawking’s Disability Erases an Important Part of Who He Was | Los Angeles Times

Sentiments about Hawking being “free of his chair” are passive ableism, says Gretchen Schreiber.

For Decades, Our Coverage Was Racist. To Rise Above Our Past, We Must Acknowledge It | National Geographic

“A magazine can open people’s eyes at the same time it closes them.” National Geographic invited historian John Edwin Mason to examine its archives and how it historically presented matters of race.

Why Is “Angels in America” Still the Most Prominent Story Being Told About AIDS? | BuzzFeed News

“It’s important to ask who gets to tell mainstream AIDS stories in America, and to consider why this one—about white, gay men who don’t really engage in any political resistance—keeps getting retold.”

“Stay Strong,” and Other Useless Drivel We Tell the Grieving | Cognoscenti

“Pain, allowed expression, doesn’t have to turn in on itself.”

Julie Washington’s Quest to Get Schools to Respect African-American English | The Atlantic

“We see value in speaking two languages, but we don’t see value in speaking two dialects. Maybe it’s time we did.” —Julie Washington, professor of communications sciences and disorders

When to Start Teaching Kids About Consent During the #MeToo Era? Early, and Often. | The Washington Post

“By reminding children to ask first…parents can teach kids that consent matters, even when affection comes from a place of love.”

How to Choose Meaningful Words: Why Language Matters | Medium

“Language is rich and nuanced…. It behooves us to use it to include and to make experience meaningful.”

Gendered Scientific Research Reinforces Our Sexist Stereotypes | Varsity

“Trickier to spot, and with more insidious effects, the second way research is gendered lies in its focus. What gets studied, and how it is framed, plays a huge role in reinforcing the way in which society views women.”

It Ain’t What You Say… | Language: A Feminist Guide

“Try not to give all the ‘thinky’ verbs to male speakers and all the ‘feely’ verbs to female ones.” —Debbie Cameron, professor of language and communication

“X”, “@” and How Other “Letters” Fight for Gender Friendly Languages | Terminology Coordination

A short summary of the way some languages are adapting to be more gender inclusive.

Calling It Out, Spelling It Out, Stamping It Out: Recognizing and Avoiding Bias | The Scholarly Kitchen

“I’m trying to pay more attention to my vocabulary and idioms. They may seem harmless, they may in the moment hold no particular intent, but they are factors in the unconscious bias against women and the conditioning of women to see men as better or more important.”

It’s Time to Diversify and Decolonise Our Schools’ Reading Lists | Al Jazeera

Food for thought from National Book Critics Circle board member Anjali Enjeti on how the “predominantly white literary canon” can evolve to become more inclusive and less harmful.

How to Use Awkward Silence to Get What You Want | Time

If you don’t know what to say or do, there is always the option to do nothing.

The Myth of the Absent Black Father [Video] | AJ+

People are “carrying these biases with them without knowing they’re carrying them with them because there’s no one around to challenge them.”

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 love@consciousstyleguide.com.

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