- For Teachers
Are all the countries in English feminine? Can I say - It is a diffcult time for the USA but we hope that her economy will soon recover. ?
I know but you can use personal pronoun as a figure of speech and I wonder if I can use 'she' referring to all countries or only some of them.
from Mental Floss :
“Stand beside her, and guide her,” we sing in “God Bless America.” Come to think of it, most nations of the world are referred to in the female gender. However, it’s not because of some last-minute token political correctness.
English is one of the few languages that does not distinguish between masculine and feminine nouns. For example, in English, a cat is a cat, and a dog is a dog. But in French (for example), a cat is la chat, making it a feminine noun, while a dog is le chien, which makes it masculine (whether or not it’s actually a bitch). (And we mean “bitch” strictly in the canine sense.) Latin, the root of the English language, also has feminine and masculine words, and terra firma is one of them. Terra firma means earth, or solid ground, and it is feminine. So, partly because of its Latin origin, and partly because the rich earth beneath our feet was the original source of food (and nurturing) for our ancestors, our humble planet became known as Mother Earth.
Keeping with that train of thought, all land in general was eventually referred to in the feminine sense. We speak of “her shores” and “the Motherland.” The sole exception is Germany, which, during World War II, was known as "Vaterland.” Technically, vaterland is gender-neutral, but it was translated into English as “Fatherland.” The terms is not used much today, due to its negative connotations.
in my openion,you can't use neither she nor he for countries,but the best and the appropriate pronoun is (it)
this is what I've learnt from our teachers.
For me, objects, which includes countries, are gender neutral and are referred to as 'it'.
that is why, to my own part, to use those genders give a stronger importance and matter. I tell that even if for us French to use them is definitely normal.
Not a teacher though
Do you know that in Aus and NZ, "she" is occasionally used among friends when referring to a male friend who they are teasing. For example:
"Ron's always late. Oh, here she comes now."
"So, Bevan rocks up to this chick, and she goes "<laughable pickup line>".
It was all the rage when I was a young fellow.