Author Topic: Let's come up with some gender neutral terms  (Read 33197 times)

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Offline Padma

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Re: Let's come up with some gender neutral terms
« Reply #20 on: October 29, 2011, 04:50:58 am »
Agreed, I like "they/their" too, and it has a very long history of being acceptable in usage as a singular, so raspberries to snobby English teachers.

Invented pronouns are always going to have limited take-up, like any neologism - and will be particularly resisted by anyone who is firmly wedded to binary gender concepts. It's tiresome what people will do "on principle" - I got ordained 14 years ago as a Buddhist, and I still have people around me who knew me before, who refuse to let themselves try to learn my "new" name (which I've now had for nearly a third of my life) properly. that name, incidentally, is gender-neutral in Sanskrit (well, technically you just pronounce the last vowel differently depending on gender) so I'm keeping it ;D.

My maternal (and very Jewish) grandparents were known to me as Saba and Safta - which it turns out is Aramaic for "old man, old woman" :). I think I was in my early teens before I realised either of them had a, you know, actual name...
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Offline Padma

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Re: Let's come up with some gender neutral terms
« Reply #21 on: October 29, 2011, 06:53:34 am »
I enquired with a scholarly acquaintance about the they/their "correctness" issue, and he pointed me to this article of his, and said in his email:

"There is still much dispute about the use of singular "their", but the consensus has definitely moved a long way towards acceptance. It is now rejected only in very formal prose."
Womandrogyne™

Offline Lyric

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Re: Let's come up with some gender neutral terms
« Reply #22 on: October 29, 2011, 10:07:44 am »
The "Grammer Girl" podcast recently tackled the use of "they" as a genderless alternative and her conclusion was that it was about the best of the bad choices. The thing about language is that it has never successfully been designed, but rather tends to be a hodgepodge of terms thrown together by people in different regions and walks of life. The only deliberate modification of the English language in reference to gender that I recall succeeding was "ms." and I think that was just because it was the name of a magazine. This is a noble effort, but I doubt that you'll see "per" and "mir" being taught widely in schools anytime soon.

I've long practiced genderless speech myself, as much as possible. I have no problem avoiding any need for terms like "mr." or "sir". I think those terms are used by and large by people in service occupations to create a degree of verbal distancing in formal business situations. I think most people would rather have someone simply say "here is your receipt" than "here is your receipt, sir", anyway. I think such terms are basically superfluous, really. If you don't know someone's name, just ask and use that.

Lyric
"Your time is limited, so don’t waste it living someone else’s life." - Steve Jobs

ativan

Re: Let's come up with some gender neutral terms
« Reply #23 on: October 29, 2011, 11:50:06 am »
It's the logistics of doing this that makes it difficult. starting with small chunks that are halfway there already may be the way to go about this.

Is it possible for someone to put those logistics into a usable form? I'm not good at that, although I can and do conceptualize in an orderly manner, analytically speaking I guess I'd say. That hardly makes sense to me after reading it.

I think if the words come from some sort of centralized area in language, it would be more acceptable.

Nothing is going to happen overnite, especially when it comes to language, but the internet has certainly proven that things can change 'overnite'.
Should we wait another year, until more Androgyn's show up? Should we make Androgyne acceptable first?
Waiting for anything is such wasted time, language today makes a lot of things more acceptable. "Has a word for it, it must be true!".

What are some 3rd gender names from language? What are some 3rd gender nouns? We keep hearing about them, where are they?
I'm the first to admit I have difficulty with even english, but I love how some words can just roll out there without question, whether they are just obscure, or just made up. Like catch phrases (words). If any of them get used in spoken or written news, great.

Right now there isn't any frame of reference. That's what we need to do. Use words that are in the framework of Androgyn. We just need more.
That framework should be looked at in places we haven't tried and see if any of the failed words would work, now.

We just went through the defining proccess of Androgyn to androgynous. I think we can keep this rolling.

(the still being watched one),
Ativan

ativan

Re: Let's come up with some gender neutral terms
« Reply #24 on: October 29, 2011, 08:14:19 pm »
Just ran across this. It gets more interesting at the bottom and once you get past the Geico ads...
http://ask.metafilter.com/93364/Gender-Neutral-Term-for-AuntUncle

Ativan(somebody is reading this right now to make sure I don't say anything bad, well at least 16% of the words anyway)

Offline Sevan

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Re: Let's come up with some gender neutral terms
« Reply #25 on: October 29, 2011, 08:24:10 pm »
I can't say this enough...I'm NOT trying to change the world! NOT. I am not aiming for complete world wide use of these words!! I'm not. I don't expect that. That's not my goal. I don't need these words in the dictionary, I don't need these words taught in school...I simply want them for *me* and perhaps for you...if you want them..and if you don't, then please. Just leave them. And don't use them. That's fine!

It is so frustrating to me that people say (and trust me...I've heard this ALOT hence this little ranty rant..) that I shouldn't even try since ya know..it's not going to be picked up and used right away by all people all over.

I am only coming here to the group at large to access the larger creative brain power. I have ran out of ideas myself so I've come here for help. Really...honestly...I'm looking for words that I can offer up to my friends and circle of peers so they can use them because they've requested words. They've requested ways to speak about me because more than one person has found it untrue to refer to me with female pronouns. They've found that uncomfortable and then come to me and asked for different words. At which...I'm lacking.
I'm also the spouse to the fabulous Mrs. Cynthialee.



ativan

Re: Let's come up with some gender neutral terms
« Reply #26 on: October 29, 2011, 08:34:30 pm »
Well...OK, you get to use the words first  ;D

Would a one week preusage be OK? I think we should just let you try any we may find, and report back on how you think they are doing. ;)
You brought to the front of the Androgyn line, a topic the rest of us can only be concerned to a degree. But I think its a high degree.
You're like that person that says, "You know...,it would be nice if blah blah...". I don't think its a giving or taking from you.
It's just a really good idea. You're really good at good ideas, face it. We do. "well Sevan said it was a good idea"

With a love of the respect due you,
Ativan

Offline Sevan

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Re: Let's come up with some gender neutral terms
« Reply #27 on: October 29, 2011, 08:55:59 pm »
*sigh* I wasn't so much directing that at you @tivan. You're being quite helpful...or at least it seems that way to me. ;)

I was more annoyed and ranting in response to all the people in that thread that was in the link you shared; all those people who tried to discourage the OP from finding the word they were seeking. I'm annoyed at all the people who are trying to discourage me from finding words simply because the world at large isn't going to use them....how do we know that they won't use them? Perhaps they will!! I can't know. Though I don't care. That's the thing. I'm looking to help my peer group. Not the world. Though if the world is helped....awesome!! Fantastic! That'd be great. I just don't see why I should stop looking for words to help my peer group and family.

As for the foreign languages that already have 3rd, 4th, 5th, etc genders...well I believe them to be mostly tribal and thus...not connected to the internet. I'd hoped that at least someone had encountered them and posted their findings to the internet but I've had no luck as of yet. Maybe these tribes don't actually exist and it's some sort of internet meme to say that they do. It's all a farse. Damn it. I knew it.
I'm also the spouse to the fabulous Mrs. Cynthialee.



Offline Sevan

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Re: Let's come up with some gender neutral terms
« Reply #28 on: October 29, 2011, 09:09:03 pm »
Thanks to my darling wife for this link: http://genderfork.com/2009/the-bugis-five-genders/ So that gives us a bit more information. :)
I'm also the spouse to the fabulous Mrs. Cynthialee.



ativan

Re: Let's come up with some gender neutral terms
« Reply #29 on: October 29, 2011, 09:17:51 pm »
In what I was seeing, from googling, was that the movement for gender-neutral titles is being taken on by the feminest movement (was that just not gender neutral?).
Anyways, there are some comparable reasons. Somewhere else to look. The 3rd gender thing, now that I think about it, was always some ancient long dead society that we really only think they lived on that rock over there. but it seems that India or nearby cultures may be of some help.

Time to go watch a movie or two
Ativan 16% watched

Offline Shana A

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Re: Let's come up with some gender neutral terms
« Reply #30 on: October 29, 2011, 10:19:08 pm »
Shortly after I came up with my name, Zythyra, some close friends started calling me Z for short, and I liked that for me. I also found Z convenient as a personal pronoun. A few years later I started seeing ze or zie as a gender free pronoun. I've never gotten used to hir, finding the pronunciation confusing. My partner likes using singular they/their, and I've gotten to like that, but people who aren't us often wonder what groups of people we're talking about when we use it.

Z
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Offline Sevan

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Re: Let's come up with some gender neutral terms
« Reply #31 on: October 29, 2011, 11:17:05 pm »
I was looking at the list of desired words again and  I keep looking at Mr./Mrs. and I keep thinking Mz. would be most appropriate but it seems a bit close to the female "Ms." though this is normally a written thing rather than a spoken thing so perhaps it'd work anyway?

I also remembered something Cyndi's brother came up with early on in her transition. He was struggling with the change of his "brother" turning into his "sister" and so started calling Cyndi his "broster" as he wrapped his head around the whole transition consept. I like that alot personally.

So that could potentially check off two from our list...if anyone else likes these...that is.

@tivan: I like the idea of giving it a week  :laugh: We've been trying out "per/pers" today because it's new to us and we do like new words (Cyndi and I being that "us") I am not used to it yet but I gotta say it rolls off the tongue significantly easier than "hir" that's for sure! We often make up silly words that may or may not actually have meaning....I'm convinced Cyndi has a form of tourettes with all the strange and random words that spring forth from her mouth...often when upset, frustrated or anxious. Though it often serves as a form of humor around here.

Our house is a unique place due to the constant stream of random and "new" words. So we (relatively) easily assimilate new words into our lexicon. :)
I'm also the spouse to the fabulous Mrs. Cynthialee.



ativan

Re: Let's come up with some gender neutral terms
« Reply #32 on: October 29, 2011, 11:50:56 pm »
I'd like to see words that make explaining Androgyn or 3rd Gender easier. That's asking a lot, i know. But I'm also in the crowd that sees these conflicts with genders everywhere a reason to push the definition out there ahead of the word. I have two girls and I'll be damned if some gender bullshit interferes with their lives. I don't know if that makes sense, it does to me. I'll be the one who tells how it needs to be done and then tell you the name of it. :D ;D. Its kind of like animal rescue. First you take the animal, then tell them why. Usually you have a deputy sheriff near by. ;)

So anyways, I'm always plotting to take over the world HAHA-HA!

Ativan

Offline foosnark

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Re: Let's come up with some gender neutral terms
« Reply #33 on: October 31, 2011, 08:54:31 am »
I'm trying to figure out why it is neutral pronouns bug me.  I din't mind if other people use them and will respect their wishes, but... I don't know.  Personal issues I guess.

Offline Sevan

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Re: Let's come up with some gender neutral terms
« Reply #34 on: October 31, 2011, 11:10:53 pm »
Grrrr!!! I can not come up with a word that fills in "boy/girl" grrrr!!! :( This is annoying me very very much.
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Offline Metroland

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Re: Let's come up with some gender neutral terms
« Reply #35 on: November 01, 2011, 03:22:38 am »
I was looking at the list of desired words again and  I keep looking at Mr./Mrs. and I keep thinking Mz.

I am not sure if you have seen this before, but the UK government is planning on adding Mx as a gender option on their passport. http://www.theregister.co.uk/2011/09/27/gender_database_debate/.  It is spelled as Mix.

I don't like the idea so much because it reminds me of variable x in algebra, as if the gender is indeterminate.

ativan

Re: Let's come up with some gender neutral terms
« Reply #36 on: November 01, 2011, 09:59:23 pm »
I just have my own little campaign of scratching out what I don't like and right yes if they ask for gender. Ethnically I am always other, if they need more I write terran. I went around and around with doctors and others about the question of gender and race. I will never stop arguing about it.

Ativan

ativan

Re: Let's come up with some gender neutral terms
« Reply #37 on: November 01, 2011, 10:02:24 pm »
Grrrr!!! I can not come up with a word that fills in "boy/girl" grrrr!!! :( This is annoying me very very much.
I thought that 'kid' covered that.
Ativan

Julian

Re: Let's come up with some gender neutral terms
« Reply #38 on: November 01, 2011, 10:04:07 pm »
I just have my own little campaign of scratching out what I don't like and right yes if they ask for gender. Ethnically I am always other, if they need more I write terran. I went around and around with doctors and others about the question of gender and race. I will never stop arguing about it.

Ativan

Heh, I kinda do that. Except my preferred answer for gender is 'nope'.

My partner came up with the term 'ladydudefriend' to refer to me, though I can see how that one might not work for everyone. :P

ativan

Re: Let's come up with some gender neutral terms
« Reply #39 on: November 01, 2011, 10:07:24 pm »
"LDF"? well Fu*k'm.

Ativan

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