[LMB] OT: Gender Applied to Inanimate Objects

Howard Brazee howard at brazee.net
Fri Sep 19 18:41:47 BST 2008


Diana Hagan wrote:
> To quote Fowler *A Dictionary of Modern Usage: *
>
> "It is a mistake to suppose thatthe pronoun is singular only, and must at
> all costs befollowed by singular verbs, etc.; the OED explicitly states that
> plural construction is commoner."
>   
"None" doesn't bother me - but I haven't yet become accustomed to using 
plurals to avoid gender pronouns.

That said, while I enjoyed /Babel-17/, and much of the discussions we 
had back then about how language constructs influence behavior - we 
haven't seen that this is actually true. We can't chart sexist language 
vs. sexist behavior in any meaningful way.



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