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    • Join Date: Dec 2008
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    #1

    What is the pronoun for a person?

    Since a person is a singular, what is the pronoun for it?

    When I used "they" for a person, the teacher marked it wrong and corrected it to "he/she".

    Please help me to know which of the ones is correct?

    Thanks.
    Last edited by Saad_1; 25-Jan-2009 at 13:51.

  1. xpert's Avatar
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    #2

    Re: What is the pronoun for a person?

    I/He/She -- singular

    We/They -- plural

    You -- singular and plural


    • Join Date: Dec 2008
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    #3

    Re: What is the pronoun for a person?

    Quote Originally Posted by xpert View Post
    I/He/She -- singular

    We/They -- plural

    You -- singular and plural
    Thanks, xpert, but can we use "they" for a person or we have to use "he/she"?

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    #4

    Re: What is the pronoun for a person?

    I am not a English teacher.

    These days, at many a place such as in govt. writings etc.,, the pronoun 'they' is being used to refer to a person to avoid the cumbersome replacement of he/she everytime and also to remove the gender partially that has been the norm to use 'he' where ever such situations are coming about.

    However, the purists and the rules of many tests on English strictly suggest the learners and the users of English to avoid using 'they' for a singular person, even if a scenario is commonly applicable to the all the members of society. I prefer using 'he/she' when ever I have to.

    Please let me know if I faltered anywhere.

    Thanks,
    Kiran

  2. RonBee's Avatar
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    #5

    Re: What is the pronoun for a person?

    It has become fairly common to use "they" when the sex of the individual is not known. Otherwise, "he" or "she" is used. Old habits die hard, however, and those of us who were taught to use "he" in such situations might continue to do so.



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