September 29, 2022

What are your pronouns?

by Alexis Worlock, September 29, 2022

The point of language is to communicate, not to confuse.

As a linguist, I know the importance of clarity in language. Its primary function is its ability to transport the perceptions and knowledge of one person to the minds of others, quickly, efficiently, and without distortion.

Pronouns are a shorthand for conveying person, number, and gender in the fastest and clearest way possible. They cannot do this if they are up for grabs.

The only way language works is if the meaning of words is reliable and consistent. If their meanings vary, there is now just noise; it is no longer language. 'She', for example, in English, means 'an individual female'; 'he' means 'an individual male'. 'They' means 'more than one'. 'It' refers to something inanimate or non-human.

There is a widely accepted theory that what set humans apart from all other animals, early in our evolution, was language. While other creatures communicate to some degree, none do so with the uniquely human system of abstract words (like pronouns, conditionals, tenses etc) that give us the ability to express and connect extensively and clearly, and thus coordinate actions and share information within groups and even across generations. Language is what gave us the edge, and allowed us to survive and advance despite our many physical weaknesses compared with other creatures.

When pronouns become inconsistent and subjective--'they', for example, used to refer to a single individual, or standard pronouns replaced with nonsense syllables--communication is distorted and misleading. Without reliable clarity of language, the advances of civilization begin to be undone. I am not willing to be a party to this. It is destructive and retrogressive.

Tim adds:

Couldn't agree more Alexis. It's why Confucius said to restore a nation one must first true the language. Our langauge has become fuzzy and failes to serve it's purpose of communicating - exactly as some want it. You can't think with bad language any more than communicate, I might add. It's why when arguing with liberals they often start using jargon designed to obscure what is being discussed. They need that - they can't think properly and they don't want you doing so either.

Posted by: Timothy Birdnow at 11:37 AM | Comments (2) | Add Comment
Post contains 370 words, total size 2 kb.

1 The point of language is to communicate, not to confuse.

Posted by: Fake Watches at May 30, 2023 04:20 AM (0b23z)

2 Your content is very interesting. I am very impressed with your post. I hope to receive more great posts. Ed Speleers James Thomas Jacket

Posted by: Mike Rooney at February 28, 2024 03:25 AM (28EtU)

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