[Ads-l] Word of the Year 2015: singular "they"

Ben Zimmer bgzimmer at GMAIL.COM
Sat Jan 9 20:51:32 UTC 2016


Here's a working link to Neal's great piece:

http://www.visualthesaurus.com/cm/dictionary/dos-and-donts-for-singular-they/

On Sat, Jan 9, 2016 at 10:30 AM, Neal Whitman wrote:
>
> As I tweeted a few moments ago:=20
>
> #woty2016 Maybe a good time to put my 2010 @VisualThesaurus bit on singular "=
> they" out there again: visualthesaurus.com/cm/dictionary/=E2=80=A6
>
>
> > On Jan 9, 2016, at 6:50 AM, Salikoko S. Mufwene wrote:
> >=20
> > Are we likely to see/hear "singular /they/" agree with the verb in the=20
> > same way as /he/ and /she/? Is the following construction likely to be=20
> > considered acceptable:
> >=20
> > /I wonder whether there is a person here that claimed _they knowS_ the=20
> > answer.
> >=20
> > /Or will "singular /they/" continue to be referentially singular but=20
> > syntactically plural?
> >=20
> > Sali.
> >=20
> >> On 1/9/2016 5:29 AM, Ben Zimmer wrote:
> >> Here's my writeup of the WOTY voting for Vocabulary.com:
> >>=20
> >> http://www.vocabulary.com/articles/wordroutes/they-won-gender-neutral-pro=
> noun-is-2015-word-of-the-year/
> >>=20
> >> The selection is also receiving plenty of media coverage...
> >>=20
> >> http://time.com/4173992/word-of-the-year-2015-they/
> >> http://www.businessinsider.com/the-word-they-named-2015-word-of-the-year-=
> 2016-1
> >> https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/wonk/wp/2016/01/08/donald-trump-may-w=
> in-this-years-word-of-the-year/
> >> http://www.inc.com/chris-matyszczyk/the-new-word-of-the-year-is-going-to-=
> upset-some-people.html
> >>=20
> >>=20
> >>> On Fri, Jan 8, 2016 at 8:41 PM, Ben Zimmer <bgzimmer at gmail.com> wrote:
> >>> The Word of the Year for 2015 is "they" used as a gender-neutral
> >>> singular pronoun. "They" was recognized by the society for its
> >>> emerging use as a pronoun to refer to a known person, often as a
> >>> conscious choice by someone rejecting the traditional gender binary of
> >>> "he" and "she."
> >>>=20
> >>> Read the press release:
> >>> http://www.americandialect.org/2015-word-of-the-year-is-singular-they
> >>> Shortcut to PDF: http://bit.ly/ADSWOTY15

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