TommyZamora2 wrote:I myself don't like to use genders. I don't really know about the benefits of having them or not, but that's just me. Does the one you are working on currently have them?
ltrout99 wrote:[...] if I was to have genders I would most likely need to change cases to change according to: Gender, plural, and whether it is a short or long vowel ending. I think that just seems a little much.
ltrout99 wrote:How many of you use genders in your conlang?
Do you think there are any benefits to having a gendered conlang rather than one without any genders?.
Ashucky wrote:Not necessarily. I assume the majority of your cases are various locative cases that would have originally been postpositions/adpositions, so cases could now always come final, without changing much, no matter the gender of the original noun. There would probably be some differences due to assimilation or other processes like that, but it doesn't have to be for every case suffix, and it can be rather easily done, too. But I don't know how your language works, so I can't give you actual examples.
Dormouse559 wrote:If a language has gender, every noun has gender.
No, you couldn't. If you can identify one gender in a language, there is at least one more. That second gender might be defined oppositionally, like "non-human", but it is a gender nonetheless; and all nouns will be assigned one gender or another.ltrout99 wrote:So in other words, I could really make a language with only certain words having genders?
Dormouse559 wrote:EDIT: And to confront a misconception that seems to turn a lot of people off to gender: Grammatical gender is not inherently linked to social gender or biological sex. The term comes from the European grammatical tradition, where grammatical genders are often sex based, but sex is not the defining feature of gender in every language. And even in languages where gender is sex based, the gender a sexless noun is assigned doesn't necessarily imply any connection between that noun and the sex its gender is based on. The words for "manhood" and "masculinity" are feminine in most if not all Romance languages. French slang words for "penis" are almost exclusively feminine and the word for "vagina" is masculine. In French, a "soulmate" is feminine even if they're male. The gender of a noun does not necessarily link it to a particular sex.
Mentilliath wrote:^Well, there is a middle ground in the sense that a language can only make gender distinctions in the pronouns (such as with English) and nowhere else.
linguoboy wrote:I fail to see how that is a "middle ground". Every noun gets replaced with one of these three pronouns and, though there is some variability of usage (e.g. "it" or "she" for boats), in the vast majority of cases there is one and only one correct choice.
We tend to think of gender as something controlling agreement primarily between nouns and modifiers, but again this is a very Eurocentric view and there's no reason why you couldn't have, for instance, gender agreement only between nouns and verbs instead.
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