Synonyms for Power: Male, Manly and Masculine

Monday, 12 October 2009

I was playing with an online thesaurus today, attempting to write taglines (admittedly, one of my weaknesses) and happened to look up the word “power.” To my surprise, I discovered that some accepted synonyms for “power” include “male,” “manful,” “manlike,” “manly” and “masculine.”

Sexist Synonyms?


What do you think? Sexist, surprising, or neither? I don’t exactly consider myself a feminist, and I definitely think I have a sense of humor about a lot of subjects many women consider touchy, such as the Motrin Moms fiasco and most fratire literature. But are the words “power” and “male” really interchangeable?


  • I find my level of insult mild to moderate. I have a sense of humor about things like this, but let’s hope we can change the tide.

    Comment by Sue Densmore — October 12, 2009 @ 4:39 pm
  • What I find disturbing, as opposed to amusing, is that a thesaurus is a factual, serious text, whereas advertising and fratire lit is meant to shock or entertain.

    Comment by Alison — October 12, 2009 @ 5:47 pm
  • I do not see that they are interchangeable
    and it is not written so in thesaurus. However, cultural relationship is here, at least in many parts of the world. Both in the respect that most of direct power is in hands of males, and in respect that males are more power and competition driven.

    Comment by giedrius — October 13, 2009 @ 1:26 am
  • Of course it may tick women off, but I think it is factually correct.

    Comment by Ron Tombe — October 25, 2009 @ 1:15 pm

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