Volume 11, Issue 2
  • ISSN 2211-3770
  • E-ISSN: 2211-3789
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This paper describes an ongoing shift in the pronominal system of English that is primarily related to transgender and non-binary identities. Apparent time evidence suggests that this is an ongoing change, and metalinguistic comments support the indexical link between the change and the increased visibility of transgender and non-binary English speakers. Sociopragmatic variation enabled by this change shows that the pronoun system of English functions much less like a grammatical gender (noun class) system, and much more like a system of honorifics. The second half of the paper puts forward a position for social justice around pronoun use and gender autonomy, including advice for professional linguists who work in related fields.


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  • Article Type: Research Article
Keyword(s): gender; non-binary; pronouns; transgender
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