The longman handbook for writers and readers

the longman handbook for writers and readers

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A solution in formal writing has often been to write " he or she", or something similar, but this is often considered awkward or overly politically correct, particularly when used excessively. 76 In 2016, the journal American Speech published a study by darren. Lascotte investigating the pronouns used by native english speakers in informal written responses to questions concerning a subject of unspecified gender, finding that 68 of study participants chose singular they to refer to such an antecedent. Some participants noted that they found constructions such as "he or she" inadequate as they do not include people who do not identify as either male or female. 77 In contemporary usage, singular they is used to refer to an indeterminate antecedent, for instance when the notional gender or number of the antecedent is indeterminate or the gender of the real-word entity referred to is unknown or unrevealed. Examples include different types of usage. Use with a pronoun antecedent edit The singular antecedent can be a pronoun such as someone, anybody, or everybody, or an interrogative pronoun such as who : with somebody or someone : "I feel that if someone is not doing their job it should. With anybody or anyone : "If anyone tells you that America's best days are behind her, then they 're looking the wrong way." President george bush, 1991 State of the Union Address;"d by garner " Anyone can set themselves up as an acupuncturist."—Sarah Lonsdale.

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It was argued that he could not sensibly be used as a generic pronoun understood to include men and women. William Safire in his On Language biology column in The new York times approved of the use of generic he, mentioning the mnemonic phrase "the male embraces the female". Badendyck from Brooklyn wrote to the new York times in a reply: "The average American needs the small routines of getting ready for work. As he shaves or blow-dries his hair or pulls on his panty-hose, he is easing himself by small stages into the demands of the day." —. Badendyck, new York times (1985 as"d by miller and Swift. By 1980, the movement had gained wide support, and many organizations, including most publishers, had issued guidelines on the use of gender-neutral language. Contemporary usage edit The use of masculine generic nouns and pronouns in written and spoken language has decreased since the 1970s. In a corpus of spontaneous speech collected in Australia in the 1990s, singular they had become the most frequently used generic pronoun. Similarly, a study from 2002 looking at a corpus of American and British newspapers showed a preference for they to be used (rather than generic he or he or she ) as a singular epicene pronoun. 74 The increased use of singular they may owe in part to an increasing desire for gender-neutral language.

— fowler's Dictionary of Modern English Usage In 2016, garner's Modern English calls the generic use of masculine pronouns "the traditional view, now widely assailed as sexist". Trend to gender-neutral language edit The earliest known attempt to create gender-neutral pronouns dates back to 1792, when Scottish economist James Anderson advocated for an indeterminate pronoun "ou". 65 In 1808, poet Samuel taylor Coleridge wrote: "whether we may not, nay ought not, to use a neutral pronoun, relative or representative, to the word 'person where it hath been used in online the sense of homo, mensch, or noun of the common gender,. If this be incorrect in syntax, the whole use of the word Person is lost in a number of instances, or only retained by some stiff and strange position of the words, as 'not letting the person be aware wherein offense has been given' instead. In my judgment both the specific intention and general etymon of 'person' in such sentences fully authorise the use of it and which instead of he, she, him, her, who, whom." — samuel taylor Coleridge, as written in Anima poetæ: From the Unpublished Note-books. 66 67 In the second half of the 20th century, people expressed more widespread concern at the use of sexist and male-oriented language. This included criticism of the use of man as a generic term to include men and women and of the use of he to refer to any human, regardless of sex (social gender).

the longman handbook for writers and readers

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when indefinite pronouns are used as antecedents, they require singular subject, object, and possessive pronouns." " everyone did as he pleased" "In informal spoken English, plural pronouns are often used with indefinite pronoun antecedents. However, this construction is generally not considered appropriate in formal speech or writing. Informal: Somebody should let you borrow their book. Formal: Somebody should let you borrow his book." —Choy, basic Grammar and Usage revelation In 2015, fowler's Dictionary of Modern English Usage calls this "the now outmoded use of he to mean 'anyone stating "From the earliest times until about the 1960s it was unquestionably acceptable. Every, etc., after gender-neutral nouns such as person. But alternative devices are now usually resorted. When a gender-neutral pronoun or determiner. Is needed, the options usually adopted are the plural forms they, their, themselves, etc., or he or she ( his or her, etc.

the worthier is preferred and set before. As a man is set before a woman." — wilson, The arte of Rhetorique (1560 and poole wrote in 1646 "The masculine gender is more worthy than the feminine." — poole The English Accidence (1646 cited by bodine In spite of continuous attempts on the part. Use of the purportedly gender-neutral he remained acceptable until at least the 1960s, though some uses of he were later criticized as being awkward or silly, for instance when referring to: indeterminate persons of both sexes: "the ideal that every boy and girl should. Fries, American English Grammar, (1940). Known persons of both sexes: "She and louis had a game—who could find the ugliest photograph of himself."— joseph. Lash, Eleanor and Franklin (1971) Contemporary use of he to refer to a generic or indefinite antecedent edit he is still sometimes found in contemporary writing when referring to a generic or indeterminate antecedent. In some cases it is clear from the situation that the persons potentially referred to are likely to be male, as in "The patient should be informed of his therapeutic options."— in a text about prostate cancer (2004) In some cases the antecedent may refer. Are ones the next president can actually do something about if he actually cares about. More likely if she cares about it!"— hillary rodham Clinton (2008) In other situations, the antecedent may refer to: an indeterminate person of either sex: "Now, a writer is entitled to have a roget on his desk."—Barzun (1985"d in Merriam-Webster's Concise dictionary of English.

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the longman handbook for writers and readers

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" 37 Nineteenth-century grammarians insisted on he as a gender-neutral pronoun on the grounds of number agreement, while rejecting "he or she" as clumsy, and this was widely adopted:. In 1850, the British Parliament passed an act which provided that, when used in acts of Parliament "words importing the masculine gender shall be deemed and taken to include females". Baskervill and Sewell mention the common use of the singular they in their An wallpaper English Grammar for the Use of High School, Academy and College Class of 1895, but prefer the generic he on the basis of number agreement: When the antecedent includes both masculine. Everybody or a noun modified by a distributive adjective. Every, is to use the plural of the pronoun following. This is not considered the best usage, the logical analysis requiring the singular pronoun in each case; but the construction is frequently found when the antecedent includes or implies both genders.

The masculine does not really represent a feminine antecedent, and the expression his or her is avoided as being cumbrous. — Baskervill, An English Grammar Baskervill gives a number of examples of recognized authors using the singular they, including: " every one must judge according to their own feelings."— lord Byron, werner (1823"d as " every one must judge of sic their own feelings." "Had. There is some evidence for this: Wilson wrote in 1560: ". . let us keepe a naturall order, and set the man before the woman for maners sake". . — wilson, The arte of Rhetorique (1560 ". .

" A person can't help their birth."—Rosalind. Thackeray, vanity fair (1848"d from the oed by curzan in Gender Shifts in the history of English. "Now nobody does anything well that they cannot help doing"— ruskin, The Crown of Wild Olive (1866"d in Fowler's. " Nobody in their senses would give sixpence on the strength of a promissory note of the kind."— bagehot, The liberal Magazine (1910"d in Fowler's. Alongside they, it was acceptable to use the pronoun he to refer to an indefinite person of either gender, as in the following: "If any one did not know it, it was his own fault."— george washington Cable, old Creole days (1879"d by baskervill.


" every person who turns this page has his own little diary."—. Thackeray, on Lett's diary (1869"d in Baskervill, An English Grammar. "Suppose the life and fortune of every one of us would depend on his winning or losing a game of chess."— Thomas Huxley, a liberal Education (1868"d by baskervill. " no one shall be arbitrarily deprived of his nationality nor denied the right to change his nationality."— Article 15, Universal Declaration of Human Rights (1948). Such usage is still occasionally found but has lost acceptability in most contexts. 36 Prescription of generic he edit The inherently masculine pronoun he has often been used in English in a genderless sense as an alternative way of referring to any person. The earliest known explicit recommendation by a grammarian to use the generic he rather than they in formal English is Ann Fisher 's mid-18th century a new Grammar assertion that "The masculine person answers to the general Name, which comprehends both Male and Female ;.

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Older usage edit singular they is found in for the writings of many respected authors. Here are some examples, arranged chronologically: "Eche on in þer craft ys wijs." each one in their craft is wise. —The wycliffite bible Ecclus.38.35 (1382) 18 "And whoso fyndeth hym out of swich blame, they wol come up" Chaucer, "The pardoners Prologue" of The canterbury tales (circa 1400)"d dates by jespersen and thence in Merriam-Webster's Concise dictionary of English Usage. " Eche of theym sholde. Make theymselfe redy."— caxton, sonnes of Aymon (c. . 1489) "If a person is born. They cannot help."— Chesterfield, letter to his son (1759"d in Fowler's.

the longman handbook for writers and readers

Its use has been increasing since the 1970s or 1980s, though it is sometimes still classified as "a minority form". In 2002, payne and Huddleston, in The cambridge Grammar of the English Language, called its use in standard dialect "rare and acceptable only to a minority of speakers" but "likely to increase with the growing acceptance of they as a singular pronoun". It is useful when referring to a single person of indeterminate gender, where the plural form themselves might seem incongruous, as in: "It is not an actor pretending to be reagan internet or Thatcher, it is, in grotesque form, the person themself."—Hislop (1984"d in Fowler's. The following conditions are imposed on a person or group of persons in respect of whom a deposit is required. To present themself or themselves at the time and place that an officer or the Immigration division requires them to appear to comply with any obligation imposed on them under the Act."— Immigration and Refugee protection Regulations, section. Further information: Gender-specific and gender-neutral pronouns They with a singular antecedent goes back to the middle English of the 14th century, and has remained in common use for centuries in spite of its proscription by traditional grammarians beginning in the late 18th century. Informal spoken English exhibits nearly universal use of the singular they. An examination by jürgen Gerner of the British National Corpus published in 1998 found that British speakers regardless of social status, age, sex, or region used the singular they overwhelmingly more often than the gender-neutral he or other options.

he When I tell someone a joke, he laughs. When I greet a friend, i hug him. When someone does not get a haircut, his hair grows long. If my mobile phone runs out of power, a friend lets me borrow his. Each child feeds himself. Themself was common usage from the 14th to 16th centuries.

Them, their, and theirs except that in the reflexive form, "themself" is sometimes revelation used instead of "themselves". Inflected forms of third-person personal pronouns Pronoun Subjective ( nominative ) Objective ( accusative ) Prenominal possessive (dependent genitive) Predicative possessive (independent genitive) Reflexive he he laughs. Plural they when I tell people a joke, they laugh. Whether they win or lose, i hug them. As long as people live, their hair grows. Most of my friends have cell phones, so i use theirs. The children feed themselves. Singular they when I tell somebody a joke, they laugh.

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Singular they is the use in English of the pronoun they or its inflected or derivative forms, them, their, theirs, and themselves (or themself as an epicene (gender-neutral) singular pronoun. It typically occurs with an antecedent of indeterminate gender, as in sentences such as: pdf somebody left their umbrella in the office. Would they please collect it?" the patient should be told at the outset how much they will be required to pay." "But a journalist should not be forced to reveal their sources. the singular they had emerged by the 14th century. Though it is commonly employed in everyday english, it has been the target of criticism since the late 19th century. Its use in formal English has increased with the trend toward gender-inclusive language. Contents, inflected forms and derivative pronouns edit, the "singular they " permits a singular antecedent, used with the same (plural) verb forms as plural they, and has the same inflected forms as plural they (i.e.


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  5. These are some of the many databases available to you as a member of Middletown Thrall Library: Artemis (now Gale literary sources) searches the following databases (described below literature Criticism Online, literature for Students, literature resource center, and Something about the author. Singular they is the use in English of the pronoun they or its inflected or derivative forms, them, their, theirs, and themselves (or themself as an epicene (gender-neutral) singular pronoun. It typically occurs with an antecedent of indeterminate gender, as in sentences such as: "Somebody left their umbrella in the office. Would they please collect it?" "The patient should be told at the. In the English language, a split infinitive or cleft infinitive is a grammatical construction in which a word or phrase comes between the to and the bare infinitive of the to form of the infinitive verb. Usually an adverb or adverbial phrase comes between them.

  6. The purdue university Online Writing Lab serves writers from around the world and the purdue university Writing Lab helps writers on Purdue's campus. Annotated Bibliography of Works on Extensive reading in a second Language. Arranged in Alphabetical Order. Liu,., & young,. An exploration of participative motivations in a community-based online English extensive reading contest with respect to gender difference.

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