gender in language

carter pate (CPATE@UTCVM.BITNET)
Fri, 30 Dec 1994 13:36:08 EST

Dear ANTHRO-Lovers:
I came on late, but got the impression that Ruby Rohrlich
was responding to a single mention of "mankind" in a post. If so, she would be
perfectly proper in asking (him) to swithch to "humankind." Only if she had b
een piqued by repeated usage would she have been logically entitled to accuse t
he author of "addiction."

Be that as it may, I am reminded of a line I heard perhaps as long as 12
years ago, and can't remember exactly.. It went somewhat to the effect,
"Those purists who insist on nueterizing everything so that even
"management" becomes "personagement" and Manhattan is renamed "Personhattan"
engaged in PERSONGLING our language beyond recognition."

Perhaps we all need to appreciate both the point and the value of the
humor indicated.

By the way, does anyone else remember it enough to give the exact text
and perhaps the originator?