Foundations for Writing

A St. Cloud State Site for English 191

October 16, 2019
by Judith Kilborn

Gender-neutral pronouns

Here’s a link to an article responding to Webster’s addition of they as a gender-neutral pronoun that I thought you might find useful.

And here’s the article lead:

Pronouns matter.

There has been a cascade of recent news about the use of ‘they’ and ‘them’ as gender-neutral pronouns. These stories provide a useful teachable moment about the importance of pronouns and in understanding people who are non-binary. Evolving knowledge of pronouns is a result of our society becoming more aware of gender identity and expression.

October 1, 2019
by Judith Kilborn

“The Whistle-Blower Knows How to Write: His complaint offers lessons on how to make a point.”

Jane Rosenzweig, the director of the Writing Center at Harvard, analyzes the “Whistle-Blower” memo in an opinion piece in the New York Times. She focuses on the Whistle-Blower’s

  • ability to present a clear, direct document that uses “subheadings to make sure we can connect the dots”
  • topic sentences to focus readers’ attention on each paragraph’s content, and
  • active verbs to make sure that readers understand who is accountable.

Check this article out at (

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