Tag Archives: Antecdents

Pronouns: reflexive pronoun use and Microsoft Word’s grammar checker

To start with, let’s remember what reflexive pronouns are. They are what I dubbed the ‘selfie’ pronouns: myself, ourselves, yourself, yourselves, himself, herself, itself, themselves and – a bit controversially – themself (for more on this particular pronoun, see the post on gender-neutral pronouns). We use them when we want to refer back to the

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Pronouns: he or she? The gender-neutral problem

Pronouns provide a quick, convenient way to refer to an earlier noun without repeating it (as it does in this sentence). But there is one problem: what pronoun can we use for a single person when we don’t know the person’s sex, given that pronouns indicate sex? For example, consider this sentence: The child paddles

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