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ESSENCE Poll: Does the Word 'Female' Offend You?

Michael B. Jordan recently apologized after receiving backlash for calling women "females." The word seems to have become increasingly polarizing, how do you feel about it?
ESSENCE Poll: Does the Word ‘Female’ Offend You?
Maarten de Boer/Getty Images

What is it about the word ‘female’ that makes some women cringe?

In an open letter for ESSENCE, Michael B. Jordan recently addressed his use of the word, apologizing to women everywhere and vowing to never let the word come out of his mouth “publicly or in private again.”

“I apologize with my whole heart for referring to women in the way that I did,” Jordan wrote. “The word ‘female’ used in the manner that I did is dismissive and strips women of their humanity.”

Jordan’s apology directly addressed some women’s concerns that the word is diminishing because it can be used to describe any species, whereas the word ‘woman’ refers specifically to humans.

Yet, others feel like our issue with ‘female’ has just cropped up out of nowhere and don’t understand why it has caused so many ruffled feathers.

A Buzzfeed piece even outlined 6 reasons the word shouldn’t be used including the idea that, “reducing a woman to her reproductive abilities is dehumanizing and exclusionary,” and that “no one refers to men as “males.”

How do you feel about the word female? Are you offended by it? Indifferent? Or are you having trouble seeing what the big deal is? Why? Sound off below!

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