Have anyone read “Can’t We Talk?” Deborah Tannen

Question Description

I’m studying and need help with a Writing question to help me learn.

Do you agree or disagree with Tannen’s statement? Support your point of view with reasons and examples. What has been your experience? How does the author present this difference in communication between men and women in her essay?

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Final Answer

I agree with Deborah Tannen's work, Can't We Talk, because it is related to problems that people pass through regardless of their sex, age and even race. It is true that men and women differ in their communication. In most cases, these differences often leads to conflict. In the first section of status versus support, Tannen points out that men always take an upper hand in a conversation while women take the role of support in their talking. This is evident in how Tannen had differences with her husband who lived in a different city. During their conversation, Tannen's husband used to point out the reasons to help their situation while she would listen to be helped out of the situation. Secondly, Tannen points out that women should strive from being mono directional in their conversation while men should also sit back and listen more.

In her essay, Tannen illustrates men to be more goal-oriented and individualistic as compared to their female counterparts. These differences often leads to stereotypical distinctions that contribute to problems in the society. I agree with the fact that men also tend to provide more solutions and advices in their conversations in stead of emotional support.  This would help to reduce agitation and tension that arises during a conversation.

I believe that in order to break from the norm, men should work on being more open in their conversation while women should strive to be less independent to others during a conversation. Men should work on acting more and talking less in order to provide emotional support to their women. This solution would help to prevent conflicts during communication hence improve  the relationships between both sexes.


Purcell, A. (2002). Family disintegration: A bibliography with indexes. New York: Nova Science Publishers.

Paperlover (19)
UC Berkeley

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