Ze (pronoun)

< Previous | Next >
Hi everyone,
Ze is a gender inclusive pronoun that replaces he and she. In today's progressive society, I feel it is very important that both sexes be represented equally. Most dictionaries do not include the word ze, but there are many references to this newly emerging word. See:
Goodbye to 'he' and 'she' and hello to 'ze'? - CNN.com
A big university recommends using pronouns like ‘xe’ and ‘ze’ to replace he and she

For example, you might say "Ze read a book," instead of "He read a book," or "She read a book."
Any opinions on this topic would be most welcome.
 
  • Pugnator

    Senior Member
    Neapoilitan (Naples) / Italian (Italy)
    As is a lot rare, if not almost impossible, that someone find it on normal text I think it is useless to be included on the dictionary.
     

    Sepia

    Senior Member
    High German/Danish
    It's unneeded. We already have "they", and we can also use "one", if necessary.
    To you it is unneeded. I would have problems with "they" because it could be misunderstood as the already existing plural.

    If it were unneeded to others they would not bother to find an appropriate word.
    In think Sweden is the country where most progress has been done to coin and agree upon a gender neutral pronoun. While many also there claimed it were just some bullshit from the LGBT community, the ones that actually made it really famous were the EGALIA preschools and kindergartens.

    Although totally neutral in this debate, the law enforcement community has found that the gender neutral pronoun is very practical when describing the actions of an unidentified suspect - where any suggestive statement concerning the gender of the suspect might be misleading.
     

    tewlwolow

    Senior Member
    Polish - Poland
    To you it is unneeded. I would have problems with "they" because it could be misunderstood as the already existing plural.

    If it were unneeded to others they would not bother to find an appropriate word.
    In think Sweden is the country where most progress has been done to coin and agree upon a gender neutral pronoun. While many also there claimed it were just some bullshit from the LGBT community, the ones that actually made it really famous were the EGALIA preschools and kindergartens.

    Although totally neutral in this debate, the law enforcement community has found that the gender neutral pronoun is very practical when describing the actions of an unidentified suspect - where any suggestive statement concerning the gender of the suspect might be misleading.
    1. Not really. In the majority of sentences I've read, "they" - meaning he/she - is used in clear context that is impeccably unambiguous. Also, the "ze" can be confusing in speech, as there are many English speakers (usually non-native), who say "the" exactly in this (the French, the Germans etc.).

    2. No. If it was needed, than it would have come about earlier. That's how languages work, generally speaking. It was invented and is not widely accepted - hence, it is unneeded. If I think up a imaginary word for something, the very fact that I did so does not mean that the word has its place in a language (apart from being part of my idiolect, but we're not talking about this).

    3. In Polish, we have it from ages. And the Swedish pronoun is exactly like the English "they". Perhaps elegantly executed, but "they" is increasingly gaining momentum, so people feel it fits.

    4. Yes, but you can always use "the suspect"... as you did :)
     

    Aryaved

    Senior Member
    USA
    Marathi, Hindi
    There is no difference because both don't mean anything. It is one thing if we create new NOUNS or borrow loanwords but using new pronouns? By creating entirely new pronouns? By deleting the standard ones? Which have linguistic clues that tell us what language family they are in? That are a product of linguistic evolution and are natural? This a product of social inventions and has neither any linguistic benefits nor resolves any linguistic issue.

    Don't screw around with our pronouns too now SJWs!
     

    dojibear

    Senior Member
    English - Northeast US
    Invented languages don't work. That is why we aren't all speaking Esperanto. Usually invented words do not work either.

    I think that's because they lack history. The word "chair" brings countless images to my mind. "Chair" has been used for hundreds of years. To a native English speaker, "chair" and "stool" and "recliner" and "chaise" and "seat" and "throne" and "bench" are all different, although they overlap. And every native speaker knows how they are different, and where each is usable.

    When reduced to a 4-word dictionary definition, "chair" and the (suggested, invented) words "xe" and "ze" are all equal. But dictionaries aren't languages. Invented words have no history.
     

    irinet

    Senior Member
    Romanian
    I really wonder if kids know the history of the words before they start talking.

    Actually, I think that what people invent does work. Time can tell how long these inventions can survive. If there's too short to be remembered then, there is no history to teach about them. To my mind, 'ze' or 'xe' (I wonder about the pronunciation /zi/?) seems to have already drawn some attention since there's a debate here about a new pronoun, which is very interesting, and probably not the right place, too.
     
    Last edited:

    franknagy

    Senior Member
    There are languages where the situation is opposite: the pronouns are gender-independent.
    Translators solve the problem in dialogs between men and women using "The boy asked"-"The girl answered".
     

    dojibear

    Senior Member
    English - Northeast US
    To my mind, 'ze' or 'xe' seems to have already drawn some attention
    According to the wikipedia article below, "Various proposals for such changes have been introduced since at least the 19th century." That's the 1800s. The women's rights movement promoted pronoun changes since the 1970s, and probably deserves the credit for "they" becoming accepted.

    "Ze" started as early as the 1990s (perhaps earlier), according to a table of non-traditional pronouns at:

    Gender-specific and gender-neutral third-person pronouns - Wikipedia
     

    jonny deep

    New Member
    english
    Hi everyone,
    Ze is a gender inclusive pronoun that replaces he and she. In today's progressive society, I feel it is very important that both sexes be represented equally. Most dictionaries do not include the word ze, but there are many references to this newly emerging word. See:
    Goodbye to 'he' and 'she' and hello to 'ze'? - CNN.com
    A big university recommends using pronouns like ‘xe’ and ‘ze’ to replace he and she

    For example, you might say "Ze read a book," instead of "He read a book," or "She read a book."
    Any opinions on this topic would be most welcome.
    Oh so interesting with such a suggestion, using a word can be a substitute for both meanings, both in male and female encounters and when we say goodbye
     

    barking fellows

    Senior Member
    italiano e romagnolo
    You have not heard of it because "ze" is not a word yet. A small number of people is trying to create it as a new word, and get other people to use it.
    To me, ze is totally unnecessary (in toto - not only in WRD) not only because they and one can perfectly do the job, but also, because LGBT people must not need it either: as far as I know, L, G, B and T people do know whether they feel (and refer to themselves as) males or females. So it looks like what this is all about is the queer people's feelings... and I dare say Q people are too few to change the use of pronouns! This is not a sociopolitical matter: languages simply do not safeguard minorities
     
    Last edited:

    Jimbob_Disco

    Senior Member
    British English (England)
    I have never heard the 'word' ze being used before, and am not even sure if it is a word! On this basis, I wouldn't include it as it has no widespread usage within the English language.
     

    Red Arrow

    Senior Member
    Dutch - Belgium
    It doesn't make sense to me to start an English word with X if it doesn't have a Greek origin...
    I really wonder if kids know the history of the words before they start talking.

    Actually, I think that what people invent does work. Time can tell how long these inventions can survive. If there's too short to be remembered then, there is no history to teach about them. To my mind, 'ze' or 'xe' (I wonder about the pronunciation /zi/?) seems to have already drawn some attention since there's a debate here about a new pronoun, which is very interesting, and probably not the right place, too.
    I think the article says it's pronounced /ʒi:/. Like 'she', but voiced.
     
    < Previous | Next >
    Top