Let's make a new pronoun!


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"It" is also a terrible pronoun for practical reasons. It's...I mean, it's obvious to all of us that we use it a lot as a pronoun. It wouldn't work.


Not super great, anyways. I know some people do choose to use it anyways. It's just...confusing.

Liberty's Edge

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This is a very frustrating conversation to watch unfold. Why? Because it's dumb and seeks to "solve" a problem that doesn't exist. It's completely devoid of any previous work done by people looking for alternative pronouns. I'm a nonbinary person who has used all sorts of pronouns over the years, and I've found that there's a cycle.

1) I use a distinct pronoun like xe or ne, and people say that they can't learn it because it's too weird.
2) I use "they" (my current mode) and people say that it's not grammatically correct, and that I need to create a new pronoun.

Both parts of this cycle are rooted in the idea that nonbinary genders and pronoun usage is too difficult. I'm also constantly told to be patient regarding people learning new pronouns, and that seriously assumes that I'm not patient already. I'm terrified of telling people about my pronouns, because people react really, really badly. I've had people 1) outright respond with overt transphobia, 2) say "well, you should be called 'it' then", and 3) roll their eyes and then continue to use the pronouns they assigned to me. Being a jerk about pronouns in general reinforces transphobia, particularly in that it continues to define nonbinary genders as something "too hard" for people to accept.

Nonbinary people have been working hard on this lil chestnut for a while. Maybe it's not an issue with the language itself, but instead attitudes around nonbinary people? The whole "jump through hoops to create a PERFECT option" reads more as "you must be exactly the right type of nonbinary person to be valid".


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Slothsy wrote:
Maybe it's not an issue with the language itself, but instead attitudes around nonbinary people? The whole "jump through hoops to create a PERFECT option" reads more as "you must be exactly the right type of nonbinary person to be valid".

This.

I mean, everything you wrote is awesome, but this especially is the clearest I've seen anyone put it.


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Pathfinder Companion, Maps Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber

I think it is more of a relic of a time when males and females had non-interchangeable roles in nearly every aspect of life -- for example, newspapers once had distinct "Help Wanted - Male" and "Help Wanted - Female" sections in their classified ads. Just think for a moment about the social implications of those categories.

The fact that the English pronouns to refer to a single person are "he" and "she" forces speakers to ask themselves the usually irrelevant question of "What is the gender of the person I am talking about?" It is quite common for a speaker to neither know nor care about the gender of the person being referred to.


I just thought we were talking about Keskodai's race from starfinder since they have 3 genders.


Vidmaster7 wrote:
I just thought we were talking about Keskodai's race from starfinder since they have 3 genders.

They already have a third sex, host, which I would assume has it's own societally expected gender traits.


Pathfinder Companion, Rulebook, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
Vidmaster7 wrote:
I just thought we were talking about Keskodai's race from starfinder since they have 3 genders.

Nah, as I recall it started with Iseph; since androids technically don't have a sex, it's up to them if they want to identify the gender associated with the sex they're in the form of, or just reject that as being an unnecessary organic thing; Iseph seems to fall in the latter, and they used singular 'they' and 'them' to refer to them, which some people disliked.

Liberty's Edge

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Slothsy wrote:
The whole "jump through hoops to create a PERFECT option" reads more as "you must be exactly the right type of nonbinary person to be valid".

Yes.

Which is to say, from the perspective of most of the people arguing with us enbies about it, nonexistent - because we muck up the attempt to perfectly categorize things and assign properties via label without concern for whether or not those properties fit.

They works fine if you're not sure or if the person has no clearly expressed preference. If they have an expressed preference, use what's requested. Given that the android operative iconic is written using they, they're a they. The shirren use ze/zir for their third sex as a baseline, apparently, and that's cool.

Maybe I'll get to use xe/xer/xyr outside my home group without catching flak for it someday. :P


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Kassil wrote:
...The shirren use ze/zir for their third sex as a baseline, apparently, and that's cool...

Is there a link to that?

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