The Oxford English Dictionary Adds the Non-Gendered Honorific “Mx”

From the Sunday Times:

For the first time in decades there is a new title to join Mr, Mrs, Miss and Ms: the gender-neutral “Mx” as an honorific for transgender people and anyone else who does not identify with a particular gender.

Seems like a useful addition to the English language. It doesn’t have much traction in the US (yet), but the new honorific has been gaining acceptance in the UK:

Government departments, councils, high street banks, some universities, Royal Mail and driving licences all now accept Mx.

Apparently it is pronounced mux or mix. Now you can start using it!

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  • Paul Spitz

    Sounds like the new Nissan SUV to me.

  • Matthew Salzwedel

    So what’s the personal pronoun for transgender people or people who “not identify with a particular gender,” if it’s no longer he or she? And how does a person know if the transgender person or the person who “does not identify with a particular gender” prefers a particular pronoun? Is it good social form to ask the person first, or just roll the dice? Under this new regime, it seems like the chance of slighting the person is not slight.

    • If you know or suspect someone might prefer a non-“standard” pronoun, then I think you just ask. “Hey, what pronouns do you prefer for yourself?” should do it. I’m guessing people who use unusual pronouns will probably be happy to tell you.

      If that’s not an option or doesn’t work, then I guess you try to avoid pronouns or just roll the dice.