A Minnesota-based evangelical Christian university has released a document that urges its professors to refrain from using masculine terminology — such as “man” and “mankind” — and instead use more “inclusive” language.
Campus Reform reported that Bethel University in St. Paul wants their faculty members to avoid using words that aren’t sufficiently “inclusive.” The document entitled “Language is a Powerful Tool” teaches “inclusive” language and words with masculine connotations that should be avoided.
The document, created by the Bethel University’s faculty committee on family and gender equity, says the use of inclusive language is encouraged to be clear in their Christian witness.
The Daily Caller reports:
Professors at 6,000-student Bethel University should “avoid using masculine terms to refer to people who may be either male or female.”
They should “employ inclusive language and images when speaking about or addressing human beings in academic work, public discourse, classroom discussion, college documents and publications and in worship experiences.”
“Use a substitute for words like ‘man’ or ‘mankind’” when making general references to people, the guide says. “English is sometimes awkward” but “words like ‘humans,’ ‘humanity,’ ‘beings,’ ‘people” and ‘all’ are often adequate substitutes.”
The problem is that using “inclusive” gender language will create some thorny issues as far as reading the Bible is concerned. Just one example is in The New Testament’s Matthew 18:11 that reads, “For the Son of man is come to save that which was lost.”
The document does emphasize that that its advice is voluntary and not mandatory.