Facebook, the gender binary, and third-person pronouns

Zimman-FacebookGenderOptions

“One direction we might look, though, is toward the gendering of third person pronouns, which is what led me to write this post about pronouns on Facebook. Yes, Facebook. The social media giant may not be your first thought when it comes to feminist language activism, but this year’s shift in the way Facebook categorizes gender is among the most widely-felt signs of a sea change in institutional attitudes about gendered third person pronouns. Although Facebook does not have the same force as the educational system, governments, or traditional print media, it carries its own linguistic cachet established through its corporate authority, its place in the cultural negotiation of coolness and social connection, and its near inescapable presence in everyday life.”

 Lal Zimman’s new article on smashing the gender binary. Read the full article on the OUPblog.

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