guys != gender neutral

Eric Parsonage eric at eparsonage.com
Fri Sep 28 10:35:31 UTC 2012


The assumption of a 1-1 correspondence  between gender and sex is old fashioned nowadays.


On 28/09/2012, at 6:30 PM, Bjørn Mork wrote:

> Scott Howard <scott at doc.net.au> writes:
>> On Thu, Sep 27, 2012 at 11:10 AM, Jo Rhett <jrhett at netconsonance.com> wrote:
>> 
>>> Guys seem to think that it's gender neutral. The majority of women are
>>> used to this, but they have indicated to me that they don't believe it to
>>> be very neutral. Using "guys" is not gender neutral, it's flat out implying
>>> the other gender doesn't matter. *
>>> 
>> 
>> The Oxford English dictionary apparently disagrees with you.
>> 
>> http://oxforddictionaries.com/definition/american_english/guy?region=us&q=guys
>> (*guys*) people of either sex: * you guys want some coffee?
>> *
>> 
>> As other many words in the English language there are multiple definitions,
>> and one of those definitions is gender specific - but the one above is very
>> much gender neutral ("either sex" - it doesn't get much clearer than that!)
> 
> Well, "either" sort of implies that there are only two sexes.  I believe
> "people of any sex" would have been better.  See e.g.
> http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Third_gender
> 
> 
> Bjørn
> 




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