"Hu," from "human," as a gender-neutral pronoun.In our class on the future of the humanities (at Emory) we are using "hu," a clipping from "human," as a 3rd person gender-neutral pronoun. It is pronounced (hu:), like "hu" in "human." Its brevity and morphological structure (one open syllable: a consonant + a vowel) makes it similar to other personal pronouns a typical, easily recognizable member of this class: he - she - hu. It's truly neutral and has no artificial flavor, as some other candidates to the rank of NEW PRONOUN, such as "o, et, han, na "etc.

The motivation HUman is always implied in "hu's"s usage. "Hu" belongs to the category of back-clippings, in which an element or elements are taken from the end of a word: flu (influenza) lab(oratory), math(ematics), ad(vertisement), piano(forte), and condo(minium). Endings with an open syllable, like in "hu," are ordinary in such clippings: flu, piano, condo...
As a sound pattern, "hu" is the closest to the only other genderless, singular, person-related English pronoun: the interrogative "who." They are naturally drawn to each other both by rhyming and communicational context, as a question and the answer: (hu:)? - (hju:). "Hu" designates precisely that generic, ungendered HUman to whom the question "who?" is addressed. Thus the answer is prompted the question itself. Who? - Hu.

Several examples:
Anyone who believes that hu has a conflict of interests, should not serve as an investigator.
When the lecturer arrives, hu will be speaking on the topic of anonymity.

An employee may choose to cover only huself and hu's child or any number of children.
The vice-president shall support the president and take the place when hu is in absence.
* * *
How does it sound to you? Ready to use it? Any pros and contras?
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"Hu," from "human," as a gender-neutral pronoun.

(snip obvious explication)
There are dozens and dozens of proposed gender-neutral pronouns, including a number which are in regular use, although usually by pretty small numbers of people. We don't need yet another (if this is even original, which I rather doubt). If you can think of a practical program to get people to actually use any of them, that would be new. As it is, you are just re-inventing the wheel.

Don Aitken
Mail to the addresses given in the headers is no longer being read. To mail me, substitute "clara.co.uk" for "freeuk.com".
As it is, you are just re-inventing the wheel.

Your last sentence is insensitive to those hu don't have wheels.
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"Hu," from "human," as a gender-neutral pronoun. In our class on the future of the humanities (at Emory) we are using "hu," a clipping from "human," as a 3rd person gender-neutral pronoun. It is pronounced (hu:), like "hu" in "human." Its brevity and morphological

The in isn't pronounced (hu:).

Raymond S. Wise
Minneapolis, Minnesota USA
E-mail: mplsray @ yahoo . com
"Hu," from "human," as a gender-neutral pronoun. In our class ... pronounced (hu:), like "hu" in "human." Its brevity and morphological

The in isn't pronounced (hu:).

It depends on what your meaning of (hu:) is.
I don't suppose Emory has any Trad NY speakers; things could get very confusing.
As it is, you are just re-inventing the wheel.

Your last sentence is insensitive to those hu don't have wheels.

I was going to make a 'who' joke. Hu who waits to do a great deal of good at once..
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"Hu," from "human," as a gender-neutral pronoun. In our class on the future of the humanities (at Emory) we are using "hu," a clipping from "human," as a 3rd person gender-neutral pronoun. It is pronounced (hu:), like "hu" in "human."

But the "hu" in human is either (hju:) (Hugh) or (ju:) (you); (hu:) is "who"
Its brevity and morphological structure (one open syllable: a consonant + a vowel) makes it similar to other personal pronouns a typical, easily recognizable member of this class: he - she - hu.

Who? You or Hugh?
It's truly neutral and has no artificial flavor, as some other candidates to the rank of NEW PRONOUN, such as ... drawn to each other both by rhyming and communicational context, as a question and the answer: (hu:)? - (hju:).

Ah, so you mean Hugh, that's who.
"Hu" designates precisely that generic, ungendered HUman to whom the question "who?" is addressed. Thus the answer is prompted the question itself. Who? - Hu. Several examples: Anyone who believes that hu has a conflict of interests, should not serve as an investigator.

Hugh who? Hugh Lloyd, many a time and oft the rib-tickling partner of roly-poly funnyman Terry Scott?
When the lecturer arrives, hu will be speaking on the topic of anonymity.

Ah, lectures. It's Prof. Hugh Morton, reputed expert on knot theory and low-dimensional topology, then.
An employee may choose to cover only huself and hu's child or any number of children.

Hugh's got an elf? Aha, so we're talking about Hugh "Mr Trilogy" Weaving, who plays that nice Mr Elrond in the Lord of the Rings* movies and that nasty Agent Smith in the *Matrix ones.

And, by the way, we've got our own "Hughes child", thanks. His name's Simon and he's a grown-up.
The vice-president shall support the president and take the place when hu is in absence. How does it sound to you?

To you or to Hugh?
Ready to use it?

Hugh me?
Any pros and contras?

None at all and one or two, respectively.
**
Ross Howard
"Hu," from "human," as a gender-neutral pronoun. In our class ... gender-neutral pronoun. It is pronounced (hu:), like "hu" in "human."

But the "hu" in human is either (hju:) (Hugh) or (ju:) (you); (hu:) is "who"

Not only that, in English, 'hu' used to mean 'how or hue' - and we already have a perfectly good word for the 3rd person singular (I assume that this idea doesn't involve replacing 'them') gender neutral pronoun 'him'. It is perfectly daft to try to replace perfectly good words with silly ones - still, as we know, there are plenty of daft people about.

'Damon, what's a wanker?' 'These days a waster, a shirker, someone who's fixed himself a soft job or an exalted position by means of an undeserved reputation on which he now coasts.' 'Oh. Nothing to do with tossing off then?' 'Well, connected with it, yes, but more metaphorical than literal.' - K. Amis "Jake's Thing" 1978
"hu,"

But the "hu" in human is either (hju:) (Hugh) or (ju:) (you); (hu:) is "who"

Not only that, in English, 'hu' used to mean 'how or hue' - and we already have a perfectly good ... to replace perfectly good words with silly ones - still, as we know, there are plenty of daft people about.

Not only that, but ((h)u:), is Lancashire dialect for a certain rather awkwardly gender-marked personal pronoun: "she" (probably written "heow" or something equally Chaucerian; I'm having a lazy day today, looking-things-up-wise).
Anyway, me Gran still used it when I were a lad.
**
Ross Howard
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