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“And here is an interesting bit of info for you, from another Iranian friend. Apparently, Farsi has a second-person pronoun which is gender neutral but still personal, unlike our English “it.” As a result, he tells me that Farsi translations of the Bible don’t use “He” for God, but this neutral pronoun! He also tells me that traditional Persian culture (i.e. pre-Islamic) is relatively egalitarian…something I will follow through and find out what he means on some other occasion. We have been having interesting chats about gender issues in various English translations. He is extremely literate and was an English teacher in Iran, and is pretty excited about the Bible, so we have had some pretty good, intellectually stimulating conversations.”

This is a quote from an email I received recently from a friend and supporter of CBE. I’m wondering if others knew of this or any other languages with a similar pronoun. So much of the teaching we hear about gender roles is from English speaking countries where bible translations abound.


One Comment

  1. Meggie
    Comment #96397 posted June 11, 2012 at 10:25 am

    Very interesting! Thank you for posting. I have a friend from Iraq, and both she and her husband are very egalitarian Christians. I was surprised to hear her talking about how well she was treated in Iraq, how respectful men were to her, etc. She said the more controlling treatment of women and the expectation to wear a burka are relatively recent.

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