Bonsoir, Mademoiselle

Posted by – February 23, 2012

France has officially dropped Mademoiselle from the lexicon, as there is no equivalent for young men. Abbreviated Mlle., the term was often used to imply a woman’s unmarried state; symbolically, her virginal or simply youthful state.

But there is no equivalent for men, as “monsieur” is used for married & unmarried (& we assume, virginal and sexually experienced) men.

Long overdue, in my opinion, but it’s great to see this change codified.

2 Comments on Bonsoir, Mademoiselle

  1. milylasouris says:

    Now we just need to get rid of miss, fröken, fräulein, juffrouw, signorina, señorita, senhorita…

    I transitioned in France and remember a weird conversation when changing my details at the bank. Upon hearing what was going on, the bank manager was very helpful, but informed me that I couldn’t have “Madame *****” on my bank records since I was still using my maiden name. I’d have to be “Mademoiselle *****”, which looked a bit strange for someone in her 30s. Luckily, that only happened with the bank!

  2. jadecath says:

    In boy form, I’ve long insisted that my proper title is “Misters” (abbreviated “Mrs.”). If my wife got an “s” for getting married, why shouldn’t I?

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