Re: Stroustrup's Confession (bogus?)

Erik Moeller (
Tue, 24 Mar 1998 01:38:11 +0100

>Hey, I happen to like neuter (not neutering!), so I'm feeling a little
>germanly repressed myself! Give me a break, you could equally argue that
>girls are neuter because they transcend the distinction between male and

Today, this would be appreciatable. At the time the German word for "girl"
became neuter, the idea of transcension was probably, if at all, interpreted
as a state of elevation to a place where angels and gods play nifty music.

The denial of female sexuality has long traces in human history. It can be
found in the Bible as well (along with lots of other bullshit). Even today,
there are religous groups which claim that women cannot experience orgasm.
Therefore, the explanation that the neuter form of "girl" was a repression
of female sexuality seems much more likely than that it was originated to
the meme that women will "transcend" first.

>I don't think a language represses certain groups, it just lowers
>the efficiency of communication.

If Hitler had forbidden the word Jew and proclaimed that all Jews have to be
called "swindlers", wouldn't you say this would be a repression of Jews
through language?

Erik Moeller