Re: OT: [Let_It_Be_Forever_Islam] THE WORLD OF THE JINN
|From:||Christophe Grandsire <christophe.grandsire@...>|
|Date:||Friday, October 17, 2003, 21:27|
En réponse à Mark J. Reed :
>via the pronoun "it". But what pronoun would you use in a language that
>has only the two genders corresponding to biological sex? For instance,
>would such a hermaphrodite be in Spanish "él" or "ella"? Would it be
>driven by the gender of the word "hermaphrodite" itself, perhaps?
Probably "él" by default. Spanish, like French, uses the masculine gender
by default when the gender is unknown. So unless the person asks to be
referred to as "ella", it would be "él" (unless of course the person looks
obviously more feminine than masculine).
As for the gender of the word "hermaphrodite" in Spanish. It's a funny
thing: the word is (IIRC) "hermafrodita", but despite the -a ending it's a
masculine word. It belongs to the group of words like "poeta" which come
from Greek. Those words often end in -a while retaining the masculine
gender (more rarely, you have examples of the opposite, the most common one
being "la mano": the hand, feminine despite the -o ending :) ). So I guess
it makes the word itself hermaphrodite? ;)))
This reminds me of a report I saw on TV years ago about a true
hermaphrodite French person (by true, I mean that the person had both
equally present male and female characteristics, and fully functional at
that). This person accepted to be referred to with either "il" or "elle".
Everyone could choose what they wanted. S/he even had more than one first
name. Being lucky that his/her parents had called him/her "Jean-Marie" with
middle name "Pierre", he (let's do simple) referred to himself as
"Jean-Marie-Pierre" (hermaphrodite first name if there's one) and answered
to the first names Jean-Marie (masculine), "Marie-Pierre" (feminine) and
"Jean-Pierre" (masculine, but used by only one friend of his). For what I
remember, his/her life was as hermaphrodite as possible. When dressed in a
suit, he really looked very manly. When dressed as a woman, you wouldn't
even have believed that this person was also a man, even when you knew it
It was impressive to see someone living at equal distance exactly from both
biological sexes (this went as far as his/her official papers: some
considered him to be male, others considered her to be female, and this
from the very beginning of their life :) ).
You need a straight mind to invent a twisted conlang.