New words are constantly being invented in science and technology, and after a while people start to use them.

Along similar lines, would it not be much less hassle to use an invented word instead of 'he or she' or 'he/she'? (If we use 'they', we are using a plural pronoun.)

Meanwhile, my question also concerns the question of whether such an institute exists, not just whether a good substitute for the expression 'he or she' is possible.

  • 3
    English already has such a word: ask any native speaker and I promise they’ll tell you.
    – tchrist
    Dec 20, 2014 at 16:51
  • There is no single institute recognized as an authority for all English speakers. There are some university and newspaper style guides that are followed in general. If you're thinking of the Academie Francaise for French, even they don't have that much control on what people use or don't.
    – Mitch
    Dec 20, 2014 at 16:57
  • @tchrist - I see what you did there...
    – Erik Kowal
    Dec 20, 2014 at 17:14
  • First, you are wrong if you think that they can only be used with plural referents; see only the last 700 years of English usage. Second, you are wrong if you think language is somehow created by officious institutes run by language tsars doling out their blessing or withholding it from those they deem unworthy. That simply is not how language works, be it English or any other real, living language.
    – tchrist
    Dec 20, 2014 at 17:19
  • Five enquirers asked a native speaker and they didn't utter a word. Dec 20, 2014 at 17:46


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