Wednesday, July 29, 2015

C. S. Lewis on gender neutral language

C. S. Lewis wrote the preface of the book How Heathen is Britain? by B. G. Sandhurst, London: Collins, 1946.  In a note to his comments, he said,

"... Throughout this preface boys means boys and girls, and schoolmasters includes schoolmistresses. There is lot to be said for political or economic equality of the sexes: but the claim for grammatical equality of genders is an unmitigated nuisance which should be resisted wherever it is met."

Lewis was not a mysogynist.  He loved the English language and the logical flow of discourse.  And I  agree with him: interruptions in language for the sake of political statement is both distracting and linguistically ugly.

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