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Archiver > APG > 2001-04 > 0987793936


From: "Mills" <>
Subject: Re: [APG] Politically Correct Genealogy
Date: Fri, 20 Apr 2001 14:12:16 -0500
References: <C12E389DBC0AD211A9D100805F6516EDC15B32@csc-nt-2.csc.cc.il.us.> <006501c0c948$b3f54d80$0300a8c0@gulfbreeze.mediacom.ispchannel.com>


Robert's battle against the tortuous use of "he (or she)" and "her (or him)"
is squarely on target. But I quit shouting "Attaboy" when I read the first
part of the following:

<better is simply to use the third person possessive pronoun, "their" or
rework the sentence so as to not have to get into the so-called sexist
language issues. Now that's a professional's touch.>

"Their" is a third person possessive PLURAL pronoun, which corresponds to
"they" -- not "he" or "she." As a professional writer and editor, *I* cringe
every time I see it used as a PC cop-out <g>. The real solution, in most
cases, is to follow your advice and rework the sentence. *That* IS a
professional's touch. (IMO, a once-in-a-blue-moon "he or she" can past
muster in a piece of writing, but when two or more of these pairs march
across the deck in lockstep, then Noah's Ark is getting crowded.)

But, of course, you are absolutely, totally, irrevocably right about not
changing the language or the ethic words used in historic documents.

Elizabeth Shown Mills, CG, CGL, FASG
Editor, National Genealogical Society Quarterly


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