First  Prev  1  2  3  Next  Last
Addressing each other: "He" and "She"
Posted 1/25/14
Stupid grammar question. Are "They", "Them", and "Their" singular or plural? I remember getting marked down in high school for something like that. I think I was taught that you can't use those if you're referring to a single person and that one defaults to "he" or "his" in such a case. For example.

"The individual didn't think that they needed any help"
was incorrect while
"The individual didn't think that he needed any help"
was correct. But I might have learned the material incorrectly. UGH I hate English.

Anyway, I think that gender specific pronouns will always exist so long as any of the currently existing natural languages exist. Languages evolve, but they tend to keep their basic structure, more or less. I don't think something like English, Spanish, or French - ESPECIALLY French - will abolish gender in language as long as they exist just for history's sake.

I don't think it's really a sexist thing, or even a social thing. I think its just a language thing, if that makes any sense.

But hey, i'm no linguist or philologist or whatever its called, so who knows. Maybe we will go that route. I mean, English has changed a lot since its beginnings. The oldest types of English are almost incomprehensible to modern ears. I remember hearing an example and barely being able to make out a single word.
552 cr points
Send Message: Send PM GB Post
22 / M
Offline
Posted 1/25/14 , edited 1/25/14
Used S/he or anon most of time.

English is hard because the grammar is intense. I still don't know how to use English grammar at all. People with English majors still have trouble with English still because the language itself still developing just like the person above me mention it.
2037 cr points
Send Message: Send PM GB Post
26
Offline
Posted 1/25/14 , edited 1/25/14

dankuuwut wrote:

So I ask you, what do you think the combined version for "he" and "she" will be in the future, or will we begin to refer to each other as "it"?


Usually if I'm not sure what gender someone is when I'm using a pronoun, I use the word "they."
It's plural, but it's the only alternative to "You" that you can use to speak to someone about other people that'll fit any gender.

It's not "technically" correct, but I'm not clairvoyant enough to care
18969 cr points
Send Message: Send PM GB Post
M
Offline
Posted 1/25/14
We could return to "thee".

As to Gender Neutrality in life, I believe that is an ideal rather than an achievable goal. Until men can experience childbirth as many women do, women will always be a superior gender in the importance to the life of Humanity. The concept of "Male Superiority" is only based on upper body strength, its uses in applied violence and lifting/carrying. (like packages)

However, I am personally happy with my own male gender.
30438 cr points
Send Message: Send PM GB Post
It doesn't matter.
Offline
Posted 1/25/14 , edited 1/25/14
I call children 'It' and others 'users' or 'clients'.
31339 cr points
Send Message: Send PM GB Post
26 / M / Michigan
Offline
Posted 1/25/14 , edited 1/25/14
I'm all for gender equality but their comes a point where it starts to get ridiculous. If the world ever gets to the point where calling someone by "he" or "she" is regarded as being a sexist then I no longer want to live in this world. Are people really that ashamed of their gender? Maybe we should all start wearing outfits and masks that make it impossible to tell our gender we can use voice changers to.

The people that have a problem with "he" and "she" are women's right extremists that aren't looking for equality (despite what they say) but are looking to make things women > men.

When talking to or about someone where gender doesn't matter the solution is simple. We have names or alias' for a reason. Use them it's literally that easy.
20991 cr points
Send Message: Send PM GB Post
24 / M / Šumeru.
Offline
Posted 1/25/14 , edited 1/25/14
I don't see how women's right extremists have anything to do with gendertitles being* completely pointless in reality.
23070 cr points
Send Message: Send PM GB Post
22 / M
Offline
Posted 1/25/14 , edited 1/25/14
could someone please explain to me why is this even an issue? I'm really having trouble understanding how refering to someones gender creates a division between the genders. For starters I don't actively specify gender ex: "HE did this" unless im upset with that person. Its not something I do actively, its just habit. On top of that I'd have to say that if we refered to one another with a gender-neutral word we will be missing context alot of times. Ex: "Person just bench pressed 250lb." I hate to break it to you, but it would be alot more impressive for a woman to do it than a man. I'd also like to point out that in cases where someones name is mentioned before their gender you make a gender assumtion based on their name. Ex: "John did this" You assume John is male. By this gender-neutral logic all people would have to be named "Alex". (because it presently works for both genders)

On the note of "The vs Le/La" personally i find it stupid to have the extra language requirement of knowing a word's gender. a single "The" for 95% of the words works so much better. And if you need to make it plural just throw an "S" on the end of it (in most cases).

FYI im not an english major so I dont know the technical terms for words like "the".

Edit: While im at it, don't we have other things that are more important to do than argue about stupid **** like this? Hell, humans (as a species) would be so much further ahead than we are if we didn't fight over trivial crap like this.
One Punch Mod
88481 cr points
Send Message: Send PM GB Post
F / Boston-ish
Offline
Posted 1/25/14 , edited 1/25/14
On a forum I used to participate in, "zie" and "zir" were commonly used. They work for me, but seems they didn't travel very far outside of that circle. Using "they" often works and sounds okay (though it sometimes feels a little off because I'm so much more used to it being used to clearly indicate plural.)

I'd like there to be a non-gender specific set of pronouns that become commonly used in English, with he and she fading except for very relevant contexts, but I don't have any idea when that day is likely to come.
19221 cr points
Send Message: Send PM GB Post
19 / F
Offline
Posted 1/25/14
If someone's gender is unknown, I think it's best to use singular "they". Shakespeare used singular they, and I don't believe it's grammatically incorrect.
4191 cr points
Send Message: Send PM GB Post
M
Offline
Posted 1/25/14
in Filipino/Tagalog the word "siya" is used as he/she (we dont have a he or she) sooo.
86482 cr points
Send Message: Send PM GB Post
28 / M / Colorado, USA
Offline
Posted 1/25/14
Personally I have been studying this and related points quite a lot. The world is on the path to English being the global language (if you don't already consider it to be). But that it is not because it is the best, it is simply because of cultural progression that it is going that way.

I've been trying to invent a language (as well as find others but aside from a few like Esperanto, it's hard to find other invented languages), one that is from the start designed to be adaptive with time. English grew more by trying to assimilate multiple languages than growth on its own. It is because of the presence of different cultures and languages that english has so many convoluted rules and occasional conflicts. The language may have the means to express many concepts, but using the perfect word is no good if others don't know that vocabulary themselves.

Anyway, I found pronouns and gender terming to be among priorities that could be resolved (both referring to gendered-pronouns and appending gender to other terms). The current idea in progress is that it may be simplest to distinguish six concepts of "male", "female", "gender ambiguous", "solo gender" (as asexual species are), "gender unknown", and "genderless". The term "it" implies genderless, which is a concept for objects, which is why it's unfavorable to apply to something sentient. But the idea of "gender unknown" expressed as a pronoun would probably be a very popular concept to apply in most social circumstances where you're talking about someone you are unable to identify. And those six ideas can even express whatever's going on with intergalactic species.

I don't think we'll actually progress into using a single pronoun for everyone. I think the opposite is more likely, because of what details are communicated. Conversations are a lot simpler when there is less confusion of who or what is being referred to.
11423 cr points
Send Message: Send PM GB Post
20 / M / Eng Land
Offline
Posted 1/25/14
If I don't know someone's gender I will always use they or he for simplicities sake. But I think you'd need to be very awkward to start kicking off about someone being a sexist over how they address you if you are unaware of their gender. Hell, the world has way bigger problems than discussing how you should refer to someone who's sex is currently unspecified.
85333 cr points
Send Message: Send PM GB Post
27 / M / Louisville, KY
Offline
Posted 1/25/14
Using 'he' and 'she' works perfectly fine.
44039 cr points
Send Message: Send PM GB Post
60 / M / Earth
Offline
Posted 1/25/14 , edited 1/25/14
I vote for the singular "they" as well, especially when dealing with foreign names in electronic text-only communications...

But English genderism isn't even all that bad compared to other languages like, say, French or German where you have to learn the gender of an object. And on top of that, referring to a child is neutral, even though the word for it has a gender, so you say "das Madchen" and "das Junge" respectively for female and male child instead of "die Madchen" und "der Junge". But a table or a lamp or a chair has a specific gender pronoun associated to it and it's a faux pas if you get it wrong. That's something which is truly lost, not just in translation, but in WTF, "how do you even think that way?"
First  Prev  1  2  3  Next  Last
You must be logged in to post.