scott_sanford: (Daria proofreads)
[personal profile] scott_sanford
I have now finished reading the non-Puppy finalists for Best Novel: Ancillary Sword, The Three Body Problem, and The Goblin Emperor (listed in the order I read them). I'm not going into detail of my reactions here and now but it struck me as interesting that two of the three make use of pronoun customs different from English.

Characters in the Ancillary novels use a language without gendered pronouns and the text uses "she" for everyone, to the discomfort of the Sad Puppies.

The language of The Goblin Emperor takes the other option and has more pronouns than English, and an emperial court takes much notice of formal speach. The author uses some interesting methods to present this reasonably unobtrusively.

Coincidence, I'm sure, but it amuses me to imagine this as a trend in science fiction (or a new thing for Puppies to be offended by). I'm not sure what I could make of an experimental pronoun fad but it's amusing to imagine.

Date: 2015-07-02 02:44 am (UTC)
kengr: (Default)
From: [personal profile] kengr
It's been done before.

Heck, I don't recall if he started it with the first book, but from early on, David Weber's Honor Harrington books have had an interesting pronoun quirk.

When using the "unspecified person" pronoun, the speaker uses their gender.

Made up example:

male speaker "So what is a member of the crew expected to do when his orders don't cover the situation?"

Female speaker "She should use her own best judgement."

It's mildly surprising the first time you encounter it. After that, it's just background.

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