GENDER IN LANGUAGE PROJECT


CATALAN



SPEAKERS: 8,810,000



Catalan is spoken by more than 8 million people, mostly in parts of Spain including Catalonia, Valencia, and Andorra. It is a masculine-feminine language, meaning that all nouns (including those describing people) must be masculine or feminine grammatically and there are very few ways to avoid gendering people in speech.


Nonbinary and other queer speakers have created and popularized two inclusive grammatical genders (i, x), following similar patterns to those seen in other Romance languages like Spanish. The pronouns elli/ellis, as well as other gender-inclusive innovations, are now being used.


Like Spanish, Catalan's phonology has created many challenges affecting the pronunciation of the inclusive x gender, making it more common in written language, while the i gender has become the main inclusive gender used in spoken language.



GENDER-INCLUSIVE PERSONAL PRONOUNS

INCLUSIVE GRAMMATICAL GENDERS

elli

'they [SG.]'

ellis

'they [PL.]'

-i

-x

Elli és uni doctori simpàtiqui.

'They are a kind doctor.'

Ellx és unx doctorx simpàticx.

'They are a kind doctor.'



This grammar identifies all sites of gendered personal reference in Catalan (i.e. everywhere that linguistic gender aligns with the social gender of who is being referred to). We display the prescriptive masculine and feminine forms as well as forms in several inclusive linguistic genders (e.g. -i gender, -x gender), which you may see by clicking on the selector below. It does not identify the sites of Catalan grammar that do not have gendered personal references, like the entire verbal system. Sections in gray represent "gray areas" which lack consensus about whether or not they should be transformed. Attestations of these genders are listed in References below. This grammar is a living document that intends to show a nonexhaustive set of examples for each lexical class considered open.


ABBREVIATIONS

[M.]

MASCULINE

[F.]

FEMININE

[I.]

INCLUSIVE

[SG.]

SINGULAR

[PL.]

PLURAL


PERSONAL PRONOUNS


MASCULINE


FEMININE

INCLUSIVE


I X

jo

tu

ell, ella

nosaltres

vosaltres

ells, elles

ell

'he'

ells

'they [PL.]'

ella

'she'

elles

'they [PL.]'

elli

'they [SG.]'

ellis

'they [PL.]'

In the Catalan personal pronoun system, two of the six possible person and number combinations have masculine-feminine gendered distinctions prescriptively. While speakers may avoid gendering others by using their name, omitting a pronoun, or referring to them indirectly (e.g. Jaime és una persona simpàtica. 'Jaime is a kind person.'), gendered distinctions permeate the language.



CANONICAL -Ø / -A NOUNS

WHICH REFER TO PEOPLE


MASCULINE


FEMININE


INCLUSIVE—I

These paired nouns have different masculine and feminine forms which differ only by canonical gender morpheme ( [M.], -a [F.]). This morpheme is replaced by an inclusive morpheme, though orthographic changes may be necessary with the -i morpheme to preserve the sound of the word in writing (e.g. amic amigui).

amic

'friend'

noi

'boy'

xicot

'boyfriend'

doctor

'doctor'

bomber

'firefighter'

fill

'son'

amiga

'friend'

noia

'girl'

xicota

'girlfriend'

doctora

'doctor'

bombera

'firefighter'

filla

'daughter'

amigui

'friend'

noi

'kid'

xicoti

'partner'

doctori

'doctor'

bomberi

'firefighter'

filli

'child'



NONCANONICAL NOUNS

WHICH REFER TO PEOPLE


MASCULINE


FEMININE


INCLUSIVE—I

These paired nouns have different masculine and feminine forms which have noncanonical gender morphology, including:

-e [M.], -a [F.]

-à [M.], -ana [F.]

-í [M.], -ina [F.]

mestre

'teacher'

alumne

'student'

germà

'brother'

cosí

'cousin'

padrí

'godfather'

mestra

'teacher'

alumna

'student'

germana

'sister'

cosina

'cousin'

padrina

'godmother'

mestri

'teacher'

alumni

'student'

germani

'sibling'

cosini

'cousin'

padrini

'godparent'



by JESUS DUARTE

This lexicon of Catalan is broken up into different categories relevant to the study of gender in the language. The categories that appear first focus on terms related to the queer and trans community, including gender and sexual identities. Later categories group word pairs with masculine-feminine gendered distinctions by theme (e.g. kinship terms and professions).


ABBREVIATIONS

[N.]

NOUN

[V.]

VERB

[ADJ.]

ADJECTIVE

[M.]

MASCULINE

[F.]

FEMININE


WORDS TO TALK ABOUT GENDER AND SEXUAL IDENTITIES

gènere (social)

'(social) gender [N.]'

identitat sexual

'sexual identity [N.]'

orientació sexual

'sexual orientation [N.]'

binari

'binary [ADJ.]'

eufòria de gènere

'gender euphoria [N.]'

disfòria de gènere

'gender dysphoria [N.]'

gènere binari

'binary gender [N.]'

cissexisme

'cissexism [N.]'

transfòbia

'transphobia [N.]'

misgènere

'to misgender [V.]'

armaritzat(-ada)

'closeted [ADJ.]'

sexe (biològic)

'(biological) sex [N.]'

identitat de gènere

'gender identity [N.]'

heteronormativitat

'heteronormativity [N.]'

heteronormatiu(-iva)

'heteronormative [ADJ.]'

home assignat en néixer

'assigned male at birth [ADJ.]'

no binari

'nonbinary [ADJ.]'

cisnormativitat

'cisnormativity [N.]'

cisheteronormativitat

'cisheteronormativity [N.]'

bifòbia

'biphobia [N.]'

passar

'to pass [V.]'

atracció sexual

'sexual attraction' [N.]

sexe assignat en néixer

'assigned sex at birth [N.]'

sexualitat

'sexuality [N.]'

homonormativitat

'homonormativity [N.]'

homonormatiu(-iva)

'homonormative [ADJ.]'

dona assignada en néixer

'assigned female at birth [ADJ.]'

expressió de gènere

'gender expression [N.]'

cisheterosexual

'cisheterosexual [ADJ.]'

monogàmia

'monogamy [N.]'

homofòbia

'homophobia [N.]'

sortir de l'armari

'to come out [V.]'



CITE THIS PAGE

APA 7

Duarte, J. (2022). Catalan. Gender in Language Project. www.genderinlanguage.com/catalan



REFERENCES

Ajuntament de Barcelona. (2022). Glossari. Ajuntament de Barcelona Diversitat Sexual i de Gènere. https://ajuntament.barcelona.cat/lgtbi/ca/recursos-i-actualitat/glossari

Fabra, P. (1956). Gramàtica catalana. Editorial Teide.

Fajardo Martín, C. (2021). Ells, elles, ellis: s’acabarà imposant el llenguatge no binari? Ara. https://www.ara.cat/cultura/ellis-llenguatge-no-binari-catala-inclusiu_130_3113734.html

Forteza i Cortès, T. (2008). Gramática de la lengua catalana, Vol. I. Publicacions de l'Abadia de Montserrat, S.A.

Herrero i Goméz, P. (2021). Guia de llenguatge inclusiu en el tractament de persones amb discapacitat. Generalitat de Catalunya. Departament de Cultura. https://llengua.gencat.cat/web/.content/documents/publicacions/publicacions_en_linia/arxius/guia-llenguatge-inclusiu.pdf

Heura Marçal, F. K., & Nogués, M. (2011). Guia per a l’ús no sexista del llenguatge a la Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona. Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona Servei de Llengües i Observatori per a la Igualtat. https://www.uab.cat/doc/llenguatge

Hualde, J. I. (1992). Catalan. Routledge.

Olid, B. (2018). Amb ‘i’ d’inclusiva. Jornada. http://catalallengua.blogspot.com/2018/08/amb-i-dinclusiva.html?m=1

Pers i Ramona, M. (1847). Gramática catalana-castellana. Imprenta de A. Berdegur.

TERMCAT. (2022). Terminologia de la sexualitat i l'erotisme. Gerneralitat de Catalunya Departament de Cultura. https://www.termcat.cat/ca/diccionaris-en-linia/262

Valenzuela Sanz, A., Alonso Vinués, C., & Ordóñez Castellnou, M. (2021). Guia pràctica de lleguatge inclusiu. Chrysallis: Asociación de familias de menores trans. https://chrysallis.org/wp-content/uploads/2021/02/GUIA-PRACTICA-LLENGUATGE-INCLUSIU-CATALA.pdf