A WORD IN THE HAND: CHICK

SUE DE GROOT | Calling her a chick won’t fly unless you want to ruffle feathers

A column to satisfy your inner grammar nerd

29 April 2021 - 21:19

So the other day a male friend, who would probably call himself a feminist if the woman asking him to do so was attractive, referred to an enormously talented and fully grown female satirist as “that chick”.

“Chick” is a word I too have used to describe women during my not unoccasional lapses into slang. I don’t think I have ever intended it as a putdown. I don’t think my friend meant it in a derogatory way either, but I still felt a small unwholesome shudder in my teeth. (I’m not sure anything that makes one’s teeth shudder can ever be entirely wholesome, but this shudder left a particularly bad aftertaste, as of burnt feathers.)..

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