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Miss,Mrs,Mistress, Ms: what is in a title?

Discussion in 'Habari na Hoja mchanganyiko' started by WomanOfSubstance, Apr 16, 2009.

  1. WomanOfSubstance

    WomanOfSubstance JF-Expert Member

    Apr 16, 2009
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    MEN have only one title and that is Mr. So, why on earth should women have three or even four ? And all based on their marital status. WHAT WOULD YOU PREFER? Before you decide, Listen to this:

    Louise Whittle
    I am in my 50s and have long looked forward to a time when women would cease to be defined by marital status and the prefixes Miss, Mrs and Mr would disappear altogether. I have used Ms as an awkward compromise, but to hear a younger woman defend her use of Miss saddens me. It would be good to see this generation exert pressure to eliminate silly prefixes and expect to be addressed with equality. I feel my generation has let this one down in some ways, but I also feel that some of this generation are very passive. They should wake up and demand the kind of fairness that should exist in a truly sophisticated society.

    Hilary Fawcett
    The adoption of the alternative title Ms was intended to announce "my marital status is of no interest or importance to anyone save myself". The fact that there is a hint of "and don't mess with me, buster," adds a fillip of pleasure for women confident enough to use it. "Oh, there's no point objecting to being called popsie at work, my boss carries on saying it anyway". Or in the 1890s - "Oh, there's no point giving women the vote, they'll do what their husbands tell them anyway".
    Why does the inequality of pigeon-holing a woman by her marital status no longer rouse to ire? Of course, this could very simply all be removed by returning to the 17th century. Plenty of Shakespearean and Restoration characters were known as Mistress, whether they were married or not. Mistress meant simply a woman of independent means, one with control, an honorific. Eventually it came to be associated with the change in a woman's status when she married and was abbreviated to Mrs, but this was never its original meaning.
    So for those afraid of the undertones of Ms , or for those desiring respect in the classroom, I respectfully suggest they take up their Congreve and type in the computer box the far more satisfying moniker "Mistress". Those of us who employ the modern abbreviation of the same honorific will continue to sign ourselves Ms.

    Claire Hennessy
    There is another way around this - get a PhD and acquire the title of Dr.
    Dr Lindy Murphy, Oxon

    Not having the option of a gender-neutral title such as Dr, I have opted for Lord.
    Annie Robson, Herts

    When women of my generation (I'm 59) introduce themselves as Mrs or Miss, it sounds quaint to me. As for the unfilled field on the computer screen, why don't we all opt for Lady or Baroness. It will screw up the statistics something rotten.
    Judy Eames, Oxfordshire

    Since the introduction of Ms in the 1970s I have used it for myself and in all correspondence I could get away with. I was probably the first person in the diplomatic service to use it in official correspondence. As a PA, a diplomat dictated a letter and as I didn't know the marital status of the person to whom he was writing, I wrote Ms. When he queried it, I explained it was convenient for the purpose, and, in fact, should always be used. So we continued with it whenever possible. In my opinion, titles are: Miss for a young girl; Master for a young boy; Mr for an older male and Ms for an older woman.
    Yvonne Newman

    I tick the Ms box whenever I have to fill in a form. Yes, it marks me out as a feminist, but I have no problem being identified with the longest and most successful continuing revolution in history.

    Jane Carnall, Edinburgh
    I'm 48 and still unmarried. I love correcting someone when it is assumed I am a Mrs on account of my advancing years. I always beam profusely as I say Miss, as if it is some kind of achievement to have remained one. Which I believe it is.

    Laura Marcus, Staffs I have been using Ms for three years - since I learned about political correctness at A-level and the desire to stand up to sexual prejudice first struck me. As a young (19), unmarried woman, I feel that Ms demonstrates independence, strength of character and initiative. To me, Miss connotes vulnerability and sexual appeal, qualities which many men find hard to respect and take seriously, while Mrs demonstrates attachment - the idea that your family commitments as a wife/mother/carer (though valuable), are never fully removed from who you are outside the home. Ms is a neutral and modern compromise. Women should not feel embarrassed to make this bold statement.

    Katy Rigg, Bangor
    I have two daughters, aged 13 and 19. I have always tried to impress on them the desirability of equality wherever possible. But they both use Miss, because their peers do.Edward Palmer
    I am married but have chosen not to take my husband's name even though my father-in-law feels deeply insulted. I also do not have a wedding ring because it is pointless. Do I need to tell everyone I have a man by my side?
    Name withheld

    I find the distinction between Mrs, Ms, and Miss patronising, discriminating and old-fashioned. In the Netherlands, Germany and France, they started addressing all adult women as Mrs a long time ago, and I think it is about time the UK did the same.

    Using Ms is a small way to stand up for ourselves and act in solidarity with women who do not have that choice. Please do not abandon it just yet.

    Virginia Moffatt
    You are either married or single. Therefore you are either Mrs or Miss, or, if you lie awake at night worrying about what people think of your marital status, then you are Ms.Az and Anna
    When I was married in 1992, I remained Ms and kept my own name. I was bullied by my partner's relatives, even being told by his father that, as he was head of the family, I had to do what he told me to. The inland revenue dubbed me by my partner's name and Mrs, even after having received a letter informing them that my details would not be changing. I have been sworn at, subjected to sexist rants in shops and by call centre operatives, and all of this continues to this day.

    Gabrielle Page
    I resist being referred to as anything other than Gabrielle Page. I like my name. As far as I am concerned, salespeople can put down blue-arsed baboon, just not Ms, Miss or Mrs.
    I shun the use of any title, feeling that all are equal before God and that our names are sufficient. As regards computers requiring a title, where the box is free-form you can put a full stop, or the word "friend" . The problem comes when you have to choose from a list of options. How about Dame or HRH [/B](Happy, Really Happy).

    George Penaluna
    Calling yourself Ms is no big deal, so get on with it. And as for girlies who change their name when they get married, well, honestly.

    Josephine Hocking I remain amazed at what seems to me the archaic use of Mrs or Miss. In my part of the US (the North-west) it is a given that you address a woman as Ms. To me, choosing to address yourself as Miss is a way of saying you don't expect to be taken seriously. Miss is for children, not grown women.

    Maria Blum, Birmingham
    In Norway, titles are long gone. The only time you will spot Mrs in a newspaper is if an old lady (80+) is interiewed, and I last saw Miss in a picture of the invitation for the wedding of our crown Prince to a woman without a royal title.

    Jenny Gabrielsen, Stoke-on-Trent
    The problem with Ms starts with the word itself. It will always be difficult for an invented word to be taken seriously if it can't be easily understood and used. A word pronounced Mzzz? It's like suggesting that men, for the same reason, should call themselves Mrrr.

    John Carter, London
    I never had any intention of changing my name when I got married. I had not really thought through the Miss versus Mrs thing but decided that if I was not going to use Ms, I could not use Mrs because I am not Mrs Bradshaw so I remain and like being a Miss. It would be much easier for me to change to my husband's name, particularly now we have children. When we travel I always ask for the four of us to be seated together in pre-allocated seats. On every plane journey last year (six) this didn't happen. The reason? My surname is different. It seems that even in 2005 we are not geared up for a woman to decide not to change her name or status.
    Sarah Bradshaw

    When I was growing up in Berkeley, California, in the late 60s, my young, student parents had their eyes opened, their consciousness raised and their personalities psychoanalysed. My mother changed her name from Mrs to Ms and went back to her maiden name. My father changed his name too - to one more "congruent" with his self-identity. So I decided I would never change mine.
    Of course, I was always going to be Ms. I met with some disapproval here when I did not take my English husband's name. But using Ms was not really a problem at first. Working in a high-street shop, however, I soon learned what the typical British attitude was. My workmates associated it with feminists - somehow a foul word. Some of them had changed back to Miss instead of keeping Mrs after their divorces. They certainly did not want to be associated with the Ms word.
    Then my twins were born and I quickly realised, as I faced the disapproving faces of the doctor's receptionists, that using Ms would be a disadvantage to my children and me. It is much easier to conform, and now I use Mrs as my title.
    I don't have the heart to make a statement. I am already different because of my nationality, because of my maiden name. That is enough for me now. If it would ever become an unstigmatised title, Ms would be my preference - adult, female.
    Hope Newcomer

    Yes, Ms has a stigma ... I was once told by a friend who worked in a bank that you always knew the customers who used the Ms moniker would be the stroppy ones. I was mortified and depressed at this.
    Before I got married I always preferred Ms to the prissy and somehow faintly-ridiculous-for-a-grown-woman Miss. But, as I am a teacher, surrounded by people who probably find my views weird and annoying, I have adopted Mrs as my teacher name.Name withheld
  2. WomanOfSubstance

    WomanOfSubstance JF-Expert Member

    Apr 16, 2009
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    Kumekuwepo na mabishano kuhusu matumizi ya Mrs,Miss, Ms.Wengine hudhani kuwa Ms ni title inayotumiwa na wanawake kuficha marital status zao.Lakini hata tukiangalia katika makabila yetu ( at least in my tribe title ya Mrs ni kama ilikuwa haipo) mwanamke aliitwa " binti" fulani hata kama ameolewa au "mama" fulani.Kwa vile kiswahili pia hakina title ya "Mrs" unakuta wanawake walioolewa wakiitwa " mama xyz" ilhali huyo xyz ni mumewe! Hii ni kupotosha maana wanawake siyo mama wa waume zao.
    Na kwa miaka ya sasa wanawake wengi wanabakiza majina yao na kuongezea tu ubini wa mume mwisho wa majina yao. Sasa wakiitwa Mrs kweli inakuja? Ndiyo maana wanaitwa Ms - ambayo ni neutral.
    Sijui maoni yenu waungwana nyie mnaonaje?
  3. Masanilo

    Masanilo JF-Expert Member

    Apr 16, 2009
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    Kibongo hizi title zinaendana na availability ya Mtu Ms Mwanamtama, available na Mrs Mwanamtama usijalibu!
  4. WomanOfSubstance

    WomanOfSubstance JF-Expert Member

    Apr 16, 2009
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    Kwanini mtu atumie Ms na siyo Miss kama ni kwa minajili ya availability?

    TIMING JF-Expert Member

    Apr 16, 2009
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    Haya mambo magumu sana siku hizi, nalinganisha hili na lile la mwanamke kubadili jina la ubini na wengine siku hizi wanatumia yote mfano mwanamkasi Amiri-Juma...


  6. Masanilo

    Masanilo JF-Expert Member

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    Zaweza tumika vyovyote interchengeably shosti....
  7. P

    Petu Hapa JF-Expert Member

    Apr 16, 2009
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    Kile mtu anachojita, na kukiamini hicho basi ndicho! mimi napenda neno Binti! Bibi yangu bado anaitwa Binti fulani! Quite poweful! with a sense of self, with no aging or owned rather association with. Mwanangu wa kike nitamuita Binti Titi Petu
  8. SMU

    SMU JF-Expert Member

    Apr 17, 2009
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    Mara nyingi mwanamke anatumia title 'Mrs' kama anatumia surname ya mumewe. Asipofanya hivyo na wakati yeye ni mke, watu watashindwa kubainisha kama yeye ni mke au dada katika huo ukoo!

    Kama anatumia surname yake (i.e. ya ukoo wao), basi ni muhimu ama atumie 'Miss' (kama bado msichana) au 'Ms' (kama umri umeenda kidogo!).

    Kutumia surname ya mumeo halafu ukajiita 'Miss' au 'Ms' naona kama inakuwa awkward.

    Hizi haki zinapigqaniwa mpaka kwenye title! Mwanamke akiona vipi basi atumie tu title 'Mr' ili kupata haki yake na usawa:)! Lol