Sunday, November 06, 2011

Why is "Her" OK, but "His" Isn't?

I notice a lot of hypocrisy in writing today. I regularly read blog posts and online articles that use "her" for the generic human pronoun, eschewing the more traditional "his" in attempt to not imply that all the targets of the topic are male. The root challenge is that English does not have a generic pronoun for this. "Its" might be accurate, but doesn't work well. "His" was the traditional word for centuries, but the modern politically correct movement has proclaimed that it is no longer acceptable. You would likely get outcries of complaints if you used "his" that you will not get if you use "her." How stupid can we be?


Thag Jones said...

I use the masculine generic pronoun. You could always sell it to feminists like "well, you don't want to be generic do you? You're speshul!"

R. Bradley Andrews said...

That's the way I was taught growing up. While I understand some of their point (whether I agree with it or not), it seems that many who avoid "he" all the time favor "she" all the time.

I find this especially true in game columns and such. It is even more ironic there since most players are still men even though a sizable group of females definitely likes to play many games.

The balance may be more skewed with some social media games, like Farmville, but that is another topic.

I just like noting logical inconsistencies.