Because it often sounds somewhat pretentious, it is often distractingly tedious to read, and sometimes prevents clarity, in many cases I have avoided the grammatically proper “one” or “he or she”, “him or her”, etc., and instead have used the technically improper, but more intelligible, “you” or “they” or “them” or “themself”. For example: “If one is going to be jealous of his or her partner for dating another person whom he or she knew before he or she met him or her, then…,” would simply be written as: “If you are going to be jealous of your partner for dating another person whom they met and dated before they met you, then….” This has the added benefit of not inadvertently introducing an unintended bias concerning gender of the subject when that bias is not warranted. It is difficult enough to avoid gender bias in writing or in reading without being further enticed by the grammatically correct, but socially arbitrary reference to “one” always as “he”.


A Note Concerning Grammar Copyright © 2017 by jhill5 and Richard Garlikov. All Rights Reserved.

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