[Ads-l] "pregnant people"

Laurence Horn laurence.horn at YALE.EDU
Thu Sep 23 20:00:26 EDT 2021


> On Sep 23, 2021, at 1:12 PM, Jonathan Lighter <wuxxmupp2000 at GMAIL.COM> wrote:
> 
> I've heard "pregnant people" on cable news (not, I think, from a
> journalist).
> 
> Some writers now replace "men" and "women" with "people," whenever
> possible.
> 
> JL

Since the {women/people} doesn’t really add much, we could solve this problem by substantivization:  “The pregnant remain at high risk”; “Far too many pregnants remain at high risk…”;  

The plural version might take a while to catch on...

LH

> 
> On Thu, Sep 23, 2021 at 1:05 PM Stanton McCandlish <smccandlish at gmail.com>
> wrote:
> 
>> Trans-related language-change activism seems to be making inroads into
>> major newsrooms.  From today's *Washington Post*: "Far too many pregnant
>> people remain at high risk of covid-19. It didn’t have to be this way."
>> 
>> 
>> https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/2021/09/21/far-too-many-pregnant-people-remain-high-risk-covid-19-it-didnt-have-be-this-way/
>> 
>> I think this will continue at left-leaning publishers, because lots of
>> trans activists are strongly motivated to complain any time they see
>> "pregnant women", but hardly anyone is motivated enough to write a letter,
>> even an electronic one, if they encounter "pregnant people".  Many probably
>> don't even recognize it as socio-politically charged activism.  They'll
>> just think it's poor writing, which the news is increasingly full of, as
>> editorial review decreases the more pressure there is to get material out
>> faster and faster via as many channels as possible. (I think most of us by
>> now are used to the average major-newspaper article having multiple typos
>> in it.)
>> 
>> For an "interesting" time, check out recurrent internal debates at
>> Wikipedia as well, about using language like "persons with prostate
>> glands", "people who menstruate", etc., at medical articles.
>> 
>> ------------------------------------------------------------
>> The American Dialect Society - http://www.americandialect.org
>> 
> 
> 
> -- 
> "If the truth is half as bad as I think it is, you can't handle the truth."
> 
> ------------------------------------------------------------
> The American Dialect Society - http://www.americandialect.org

------------------------------------------------------------
The American Dialect Society - http://www.americandialect.org


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