Re: guys again

Bjorn Conrad Fry (bear@USNET.US.NET)
Thu, 5 Jan 1995 02:20:59 -0500

Carter Pate wrote:

>A colleague recently reminded me that German uses Mann in the same way the
>French use "on." "Mann sprecht . . " leasves some ambiguity whether the
>speaker is denigrating the feminine persuassion, intentinally or unintention-

A small correction is in order here.

"der Mann spricht" = the man speaks
"man spricht" = one speaks

nouns are always capitalized in German

"der Mensch" = (x) man (gender neutral), the human being, person
"die Menschheit" = (x) mankind (gender neutral), humanity


Should all words where there might be a perception of gender specificity be
abolished? Does the same apply to compound words that include such stems?
Who decides?

If "MANkind" is taboo due to its "MAN" stem, why is "woMAN" ok? What about
any perceptions surrounding "huMAN and its variations?"

Then there is the "homo" stem. It means "man" in a gender neutral way too.

And, if perceptions are so important, "perSON" could run into trouble too.

Bjorn Fry