Maybe you’ve seen people writing their preferred pronouns on name tags at meetings or in their email signatures. You may also have seen some Carnegie Library staff wearing buttons to show their pronouns. Personally, I use she/her/hers.
Although this trend might seem relatively recent, pronouns have been a hot topic for a long time. Hundreds of years, in fact.
“What’s Your Pronoun?” does discuss pronouns from a LGBTQIA+ perspective, but it also takes a linguistic and historical look. The English language needs a gender-neutral, singular pronoun, and people have been trying to add one for some time. Shakespeare even used the singular they.
The author, linguist Dennis Baron, also discusses other pronouns, such as zie, the historical generic use of he and more.
While arguing in favor of the singular they, Baron reminds us that pronouns are a personal choice that should be respected.
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