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One of the word-formational possibilities to mark the gender-semantics of a lexeme is
compounding. In this case, a lexically gender-specific morpheme is involved, as man in
chairman or lady in lady doctor. Two types of compounds can be distinguished:
In cases such as chairman, a gender-specific morpheme is the head of the compound
and makes it a noun denoting persons, while the modifier is not a noun denoting persons and
may belong to any word class. The semantic relationship between the two elements can be
any beside ‘X is also a Y’. Beside the lexemes for ‘man’ and ‘woman’, ‘mister’ and ‘lady’ as
well as kinship terms are candidates for this kind of gender marking, e. g., German
Fernsehonkel ‘television uncle’, Kindergartentante ‘nursery aunt’. In languages with
productive compounding, this type is a very common means of creating personal nouns
denoting professions, functions, titles etc. such as Finnish lakimies ‘law man’ ‘lawyer’,
Turkish bilim adam? ‘science man’ ‘(male) scientist’, Danish sportskvinde ‘sportswoman’,
Swedish statsman ‘statesman’, which tend to get lexicalized. Lexicalization may blur genderspecificity,
which is, however, typical only for nouns with male lexical elements: the German
noun Hintermann ‘person behind somebody (in a row)’ or ‘person behind something’, e. g., is
hardly understood in a gender-specific way. Nevertheless, the relation to a gender-specific
interpretation is never completely lost. This phenomenon criticized by the feminist critique of
language (pace Hellinger and Bußmann 2001-2003), has raised awareness in some languages
and led to political measures of language planning. As a consequence, compounds with the
morpheme {man} as head noun have been either substituted by gender neutral terms, as, e. g.,
English chairman by chairperson, or parallel female forms have been introduced, cf. German
Obfrau ‘chairwoman’, Dutch cameravrouw ‘camerawoman’, Turkish bilim kad?n? science
woman ‘female scientist’.
Gender marking by compounding also occurs in another variation, where the lexically
gender-specific morpheme combines with another noun denoting persons. Following Braun
(2000: 67-71) the word-formational semantics of this type of compound is the conjunction of
two predicates X and Y, meaning a ‘Y that is also an X’ or an ‘X that is also a Y’. Let us
illustrate this with Braun’s examples from Turkish: In the compounds in question, the genderspecific
noun can be either in the position of head (being the rightmost element) as in futbolcu
kad?n ‘football player woman’ or in the position of modifier as in kad?n futbolcu ‘woman
football player’. In the first case, the lexeme ‘woman’ in the head position highlights the

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