Archive for Pronouns

Omnibus Chinglish, part 3

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Me, myself, and I

This morning, while washing my face and still not fully awake, I heard a rap song on the radio that kept repeating "me, myself, and I".  It started to bother me.  Why would anybody say that?  Why would they say it over and over?  What do they mean by it?

Emma Bryce (TEDEd [8/28/15]) tells us that " 'Me' is an object pronoun, 'I' is a subject pronoun, and 'myself' is a reflexive or intensive / emphatic pronoun."  Well, so what?  What's the point?  What statement are they trying to make?

According to YourDictionary, "me, myself, and I" implies "Only me, me alone, me without companionship."  Fair enough; that makes some sense.

Wiktionary agrees that "me, myself, and I" emphasizes the speaker's aloneness, i.e., only me; myself alone.

English Language & Usage Stack Exchange (5/6/16) tells us that "Me is the physical aspects. Myself is the soulful aspects. I is the spiritual aspects."  I'm not so sure about that, but at least somebody believes it.

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Pronoun substitution peril: "they sneezes"

J. O'M. sent a link to the Cambridge Dictionary's online entry for gesundheit, which offers the gloss "said to someone after they sneezes":

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ASA pronouns

I'm in Seattle, attending the 181st meeting of the Acoustical Society of America. It's been a few years since I attended an ASA meeting in person, so I'm not sure whether this is the first time they've offered pronoun stickers for attendees to add to their badges. But it's the first time I've encountered this option. The ASA's explanation:

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iel

The online version of the Petit Robert French dictionary has added an entry for a gender-neutral third person pronoun, "iel", also spelled "ielle":

It's a concatenation of [i], the common reduced pronunciation of  the masculine pronoun "il", with the normal pronunciation of  the feminine pronoun "elle".

And the predictable storm of protest has erupted, among politicians as well as many mass-media commentators in France, along with more English-language coverage than usual for dictionary entries in other languages.  Amy Cheng's WaPo story ("A French dictionary added a gender-neutral pronoun. Opponents say it’s too ‘woke.’", 11/18/2021) provides a summary and links.

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More pronoun confusion

…but this time it's the second person, in an outtake from the Laura Ingraham show that's been widely discussed in the media, posted several times on YouTube, and apparently viewed millions of times on TikTok:

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