arcadiagt5 (arcadiagt5) wrote,

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Of Pronouns, Grammar, and David Weber

On re-reading some of David Weber's fiction I recently noticed a nice touch in how he writes dialogue.

When a Weber character uses a dummy pronoun, the gender will be that of the speaker rather than the (perhaps) more grammatically correct masculine pronoun.

It means that a dummy pronoun reflects on the speaker (a known quantity) rather than making dangerous, often discriminatory, assumptions about the gender of the target.

I like this approach and think that it is far more likely to catch on than kludges like "he/she".

The latter works well enough* in written text but it is awkward at best verbally. *To an extent, the addition of 4 characters in a Twitter posting would never fly.

Tags: books, musings

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