Re: Gender differences in language
That is an often told tale, but I don't think it is true (or, more precisely, it couldn't be true).
I had a friend who told me that during World War II he was among the American military trained in Japanese for interrogating prisoners. Because they used Japanese women as teachers, the Japanese prisoners were interrogated by American men speaking women's Japanese, which the prisoners found quite astounding.
It is very true that male and female speech are different (though that difference tends to diminish in contemporary Japan, where so-called "polite speech" is less respected by the young generation) in Japanese. But 1) someone teaching Japanese, male or female, will use "neutral Japanese", 2) the difference really appears in advanced speech and particular circumstances, and above all in "hierarchic" context. Daily speech and casual conversation won't make much difference.
This being said, one of the big difference between male and female speech in Japanese is not so much the pronouns (though "boku" and especially "ore" -for I- won't be used by females) but the use of the honorific prefix (particle) "o" in front of nouns (uchi = house, o uchi = house said by a female), but "o" can also be used by men in front of superiors. But all this is probably much less important (though still present) nowadays then it was in the past.
"Les langages, à mon gré, sont comme les gouvernements, les plus parfaits sont ceux où il y a le moins d'arbitraire". (Voltaire)