Tiny Pasture reminds me of a question that cannot be asked enough:

Since ‘man’ is historically gender neutral, and it’s only because the werman have decided that they represent all of mankind that we associate ‘man’ with only the wermen, how is further retreating from “man” a better strategy than just calling the wermen wermen?  Why do we acquiesce to that nonsense?

Ha, ha, ha, ha.

It begs the question of whether a female werewolf ought to actually properly be called either a wowolf or a wifwolf.  Both of which are words I’m going to say out loud to myself all evening…. 

7 thoughts on “Werman

  1. I don’t know why we acquiesce. And I don’t know why that makes you think of werewolves. But the meaning of “werewolf” makes me think of Ursula Le Guin’s “The Wife’s Story,” which you need to read if you have not.

    Wermen. I gotta stop acquiescing, and start using that.

  2. ah, the wonders of knowing one’s language’s history. :-)

    (me, i’m all for the singular “they” as a gender-neutral third person pronoun. i may be weird that way. whichever one we pick, English badly needs to steal the concept of a genderless third singular from, e.g., Finnish, or any other language what has it.)

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  4. Werewolves were considered to be men while women were witches. That is why wifewolves hadn’t been popularized.

  5. I understand that Germanic origins of a ‘female’ (I have an issue with the differentiation of female and male, too) is wīfmann and a male is wērmann. In that, does wīf mean wife, or did wife originate from wīf?

    I’d like to understand in more detail the origins of this “established” difference, and when precisely the change from wērmann to man occurred. I heard it was sometime in the Norman conquest this differentiation did occur.

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