Indiana University Southeast is encouraging students to say “ouch!” to others who use “offensive” language, in order to convey that the words “had a negative impact” on them.
The university publishes and maintains a guide instructing students on how to “reduce bias in language” and offers some tactics for responding to others who use language they find offensive. One of these tactics is to “say ‘ouch!’” to others who utter “stereotypes, offensive or biased comments.” The university asserts that saying “ouch!” in these situations is an effective tool “simply to convey what was said had a negative impact on you, regardless if it was directed toward you.”
The university offered examples of language that may require such a response including phrases like “man and wife” or simply “wives,” as well as “mothering. These phrases can supposedly “imply one group dominating over another group.” The university suggests instead that students use phrases like “husband and wife,” “spouses,” and “parenting.”