OT Re: Question about updates

AV3 arvimide at earthlink.net
Sat Aug 27 15:17:50 UTC 2011

On Aug/27/2011 12:5849 AM, Goh Lip wrote:
> On 27/08/11 12:51, Doug wrote:
>> On 08/26/2011 11:57 PM, Goh Lip wrote:
>> /snip/
>>> That's carrying PC to extremes. To be really PC, grammatically gender
>>> terms should now be accepted to be inclusive of both sexes. Otherwise
>>> the terms connote there are still differences 'to take note of' when
>>> we shouldn't. Just my 2 drachmas.
>>> Chairwoman. Mankind. You guys.....etc.
>>> Regards - Goh Lip
>> I heard a young California woman talking to a bunch of her girlfriends
>> use the word "guys" back around 1956!
>> I think it is pretty much uni-sex by now.
>> --doug
> Yes, it's good to hear that. We should move on from historical baggage.
> Otherwise we'll be on meaningless missions to rid the german language of
> gender prefixes (der, die, das) for things. And argue (meaninglessly)
> why a dog is male, cat female and a horse ......well neutered; Or the
> Rhine male and Danube female. :)

I'm surprised you ask. Just like Chinese, other languages divide their 
words up into classes. Over the history of a language, the 
classification seems more and more arbitrary. In German, the noun 
classification has nothing to do with sex but rather with the pronoun 
that substitutes for a given noun (er, sie, es, der, die, das, etc.) As 
I understand it, Mandarin Chinese classifies according to appearance, 
usage, etc. Some languages don't classify, like English. As an 
originally Germanic language, English evolved away from classification.

 From the outside, classification seems purely arbitrary. From the 
inside, classification serves to keep track of "related" things.


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