Re: He/She/They/It - Defending the Brits

Subject: Re: He/She/They/It - Defending the Brits
From: "Rollings, Gill" <WGILLR -at- WOK-MSMAIL-GW -dot- ISL -dot- COM>
Date: Mon, 5 Sep 1994 12:04:00 PDT

Louise Penberthy quotes thus from George F Hayhoe III's message:

>PS--Would anyone seriously use "it" to refer to their child?

and responds:
>I think British people may use "it." I've seen it in books, for instance.

Well, *I* have never seen "it" used to refer to a child in this way. I'd be
fascinated to know which books you're referring to. I'd be tempted to write
to the publishers to berate them. As far as I'm aware, if referring to a
child in the third person, your average British writer would use "he" or "he
or she". "She" is rarely used alone unless in a book or feature about
childbirth and infant care directed by a woman to a primarily female
audience (I've seen this in book extracts in newspapers and heard it a lot
on "Woman's Hour" on the radio). Then, for some reason ( :-) ), all babies
seem to be female. They are never neuter in the articles I have read or
features I've listened to.

Gill Rollings, Technical Writer, Internet Systems Ltd
gill -dot- rollings -at- isl -dot- com

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