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How is Jormag gendered in other languages?


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Hello all,I am just curious: In English, Jormag is called "they". That does not work in other languages. For example my native language German does not have any gender-neutral pronouns that would not be degrading to use on an adult. So Jormag is called "he" in the German in-game texts I found so far (I play in English). Is it the same in other languages? Do they default to male for Jormag? Is Jormag female in any translation?

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As i've said a good few times in the past all Dragons in this world are technically genderless and as far as we know they reproduce solo, so the whole pronoun thing is kind of irrelevant.

The pronoun thing really doesn't matter for Elder Dragons in this world, specially when you factor in that most characters consider these dragons evil and want them dead.It's ridiculous to think anyone would go out of their way to use the right pronouns for Jormag especially characters like Braham and Bangar which hate Jormag more than most do.Hearing them use the "they them" pronoun for Jormag really didn't feel natural and there were a few moments where those words were used as singulars and got confusing due to their long time common use as plurals in my language.

Jormag really should have always been referred to as an "It" and I hope going forward this is what Anet decides to do, especially with characters who really want to see the Ice Dragon take the dirt nap.

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Before the IBS started nearly everyone called Jormag it.Bangar still calls Jormag it.It should have stayed the default word for it, until Arenanet officially adds an actual gender to it.

I feel like they only changed it to be more in tune with currently ongoing U.S.A.-centric issues.

As for German, I suspect that Jormag regarded as grammatically male in German, because der Drache (the dragon in English) is a grammatically male term. I don't think it reflects its gender in any way.

Just like German, Spanish and French are using the grammatically male terms el dragón and le dragon.

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@"pareth.3847" said:I actually assumed that Jormag was male, as he's sometimes referred to as male, at least I seem to remember it that way. And considering what's done to female icebrood, the Jormag worshipping cult isn't very female friendly.

yes his voice seemed to me more like a man trying be "seductive" than a girl voice.

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Jormag is an it.They made no effort to engender themselves so far, and I think this may be because of their whole deception nature.

They can be whatever they want yu to perceive them to be.

@pareth.3847 said:I actually assumed that Jormag was male, as he's sometimes referred to as male, at least I seem to remember it that way. And considering what's done to female icebrood, the Jormag worshipping cult isn't very female friendly.

This is only the case with the Sons of Svanir, which is only one cult worshipping Jormag.Frost Legion maybe entirely different.

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@"pareth.3847" said:I actually assumed that Jormag was male, as he's sometimes referred to as male, at least I seem to remember it that way. And considering what's done to female icebrood, the Jormag worshipping cult isn't very female friendly.

Jormag is voiced by a woman and referred to as "they", which is gender neutral in English.

I assume many translation will go with "it", since there is no gender neutral pronoun in most languages (at least the ones I know; you usually say "he or she" or you use gender neutral references like "the person").

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Players seem to be getting confused on this subject alot.

Refering to Jormag as they/them, isn't about gender. Its because in English its offensive to refer to any sentient being as "it", which is used for objects. Characters who refer to Jormag as they/them are just recognising Jormag in a respectful way.

Its a change in scope from the "forces of nature" view of the past. Because we learned with Kralkatorrik, that's not the case. The entire point of the Kralkatorrik storyline was showing us the truth about the dragons, and why Zhaitan and Modremoth were the way they were. Although Kralkatorrik had the most severe case due to also being tormented from absorbing their energies on top of it.

Jormag is our enemy, but not a piece of trash we should just disrespect at every turn. The Elder Dragons are the life force of Tyria, and our disrespect towards them is alot of what got us into trouble (and almost destroying the world), as Joko pointed out.

But really, why make a mountain out of a mole-hill, then say others are doing the same? Just an FYI, many languages aren't gendered at all, and of those that are many have gender-neutral pronouns.

(And American English isn't even English.)

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Actually, I also have been paying attention to how the translation to German has handled this issue lately. ^^As this non-binary aspect seems to be super important lately for the English writers and is discussed a lot in the community, the translators could not ignore it. However, as stated above, it is pretty much impossible to translate directly to German.Until IBS, they always went with male pronouns by default, because the word dragon itself is gendered male. Even in IBS when the English version had already switched to "they", they stuck with "he" for a bit.Then there was a really strange episode or two, were they actually used the 3rd person plural, which absolutely makes no sense in German in this context and made our characters sound super confused. I don't know if they changed that in a later patch, though.Now, they just avoid pronouns alltogether and always use either "Jormag" or "the Ice Dragon" when normally a pronoun would be used.

Not an easy job for the translation. ^^ I also wonder how the Spanish and French teams are handling it.

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@Ashantara.8731 said:

@"pareth.3847" said:I actually assumed that Jormag was male, as he's sometimes referred to as male, at least I seem to remember it that way. And considering what's done to female icebrood, the Jormag worshipping cult isn't very female friendly.

Jormag is voiced by a woman and referred to as "they", which is gender neutral in English.

I assume many translation will go with "it", since there is no gender neutral pronoun in most languages (at least the ones I know; you usually say "he or she" or you use gender neutral references like "the person").

They and them are plural terms in English not really suitable as gender neutral terms in a singular sense due to the confusion they can cause.In the UK we do not use they/them commonly as singular pronouns and for a great deal of people it doesn't sound right at all and they don't like using them in that way.

For the most part it's Americans that use they/them as singular pronouns these days, but they are arguably an exception rather than the rule in the English speaking world.I'm not sure how many European languages have them but there are some that do, Finnish I know does use gender neutral pronouns commonly for everyone.

As far as English goes the most commonly used gender neutral terms I can think of is actually, dude and guys which are used all the time in regular conversation with both genders by both genders.It's not uncommon at all to hear a woman greet a group of female friends by saying "what's up guys"

@"Hannelore.8153" said:Refering to Jormag as they/them, isn't about gender. Its because in English its offensive to refer to any sentient being as "it", which is used for objects. Characters who refer to Jormag as they/them are just recognising Jormag in a respectful way.

This again is more of an American thing really, in Europe we don't consider "it" to be offensive, specially when referring to non human living things like animals.When someone gets a new dog for example it's perfectly acceptable to ask "is it a boy or girl?" or "what gender/sx is it?"Those questions are also perfectly normal to ask about new born human's as well.Americans are the ones that mostly push the narrative that "It" is offensive but that is not commonly accepted around the English speaking world even if Americans like to think it is.

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@"Teratus.2859" said:As far as English goes the most commonly used gender neutral terms I can think of is actually, dude and guys which are used all the time in regular conversation with both genders by both genders.It's not uncommon at all to hear a woman greet a group of female friends by saying "what's up guys"Yet neither dude nor guys is actually gender neutral.They are both, without a doubt, male words.Dude refers to a single male, while guys refers to a group of males or the males inside of a mixed group.Using a word in the wrong way repeatedly doesn't suddenly make it correct application.

@"Hannelore.8153" said:Refering to Jormag as they/them, isn't about gender. Its because in English its offensive to refer to any sentient being as "it", which is used for objects.Yet most people, when they meet a sentient being for the first time, before anyone reminds them of the gender (or they check the private parts by themselves),call sentient beings it.I've never seen anyone English-speaking give gendered pronoun to a cat or dog they meet for the first time.And yes, these are sentient beings. Even snakes and frogs are sentient to some degree.

Americans are the ones that mostly push the narrative that "It" is offensive but that is not commonly accepted around the English speaking world even if Americans like to think it is.Some U.S.Americans push quite a lot off things as offensive on the internet, even their Christmas monkey decorations.I don't think a game that is intended for an international audience should take part in these kind of narratives.

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@Fueki.4753 said:

@"Teratus.2859" said:As far as English goes the most commonly used gender neutral terms I can think of is actually, dude and guys which are used all the time in regular conversation with both genders by both genders.It's not uncommon at all to hear a woman greet a group of female friends by saying "what's up guys"Yet neither dude nor guys is actually gender neutral.They are both, without a doubt, male words.Dude refers to a single male, while guys refers to a group of males or the males inside of a mixed group.Using a word in the wrong way repeatedly doesn't suddenly make it correct application.

They originate as male words yes, that is true.However they have become commonly accepted as gender neutral terms.

This is a common form of language evolution and there are plenty of words out there that despite the "correct application" are no longer used commonly due to them being deemed offensive in modern days.Many words that are used in a derogatory manner were once legitimately used as non offensive or even medical terms and originally were coined for that purpose.It could easily be argued that using words in the wrong way tends to be the most common way words end up being redefined and language evolves over time.Slang for example is probably the most successful example of that.

Americans are the ones that mostly push the narrative that "It" is offensive but that is not commonly accepted around the English speaking world even if Americans like to think it is.Some U.S.Americans push quite a lot off things as offensive on the internet, even their Christmas monkey decorations.I don't think a game that is intended for an international audience should take part in these kind of
narratives.

I fully agree man.Speaking of which "man" in the context I just used it in is another word often used in a gender neutral way lol

Escapism is where we all go to get away from the real world, it benefits nobody when the real world keeps invading that space.

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@Teratus.2859 said:

@"pareth.3847" said:I actually assumed that Jormag was male, as he's sometimes referred to as male, at least I seem to remember it that way. And considering what's done to female icebrood, the Jormag worshipping cult isn't very female friendly.

Jormag is voiced by a woman and referred to as "they", which is gender neutral in English.

I assume many translation will go with "it", since there is no gender neutral pronoun in most languages (at least the ones I know; you usually say "he or she" or you use gender neutral references like "the person").

They and them are plural terms in English not really suitable as gender neutral terms in a singular sense due to the confusion they can cause.In the UK we do not use they/them commonly as singular pronouns and for a great deal of people it doesn't sound right at all and they don't like using them in that way.

For the most part it's Americans that use they/them as singular pronouns these days, but they are arguably an exception rather than the rule in the English speaking world.I'm not sure how many European languages have them but there are some that do, Finnish I know does use gender neutral pronouns commonly for everyone.

As far as English goes the most commonly used gender neutral terms I can think of is actually, dude and guys which are used all the time in regular conversation with both genders by both genders.It's not uncommon at all to hear a woman greet a group of female friends by saying "what's up guys"

@"Hannelore.8153" said:Refering to Jormag as they/them, isn't about gender. Its because in English its offensive to refer to any sentient being as "it", which is used for objects. Characters who refer to Jormag as they/them are just recognising Jormag in a respectful way.

This again is more of an American thing really, in Europe we don't consider "it" to be offensive, specially when referring to non human living things like animals.When someone gets a new dog for example it's perfectly acceptable to ask "is it a boy or girl?" or "what gender/sx is it?"Those questions are also perfectly normal to ask about new born human's as well.Americans are the ones that mostly push the narrative that "It" is offensive but that is not commonly accepted around the English speaking world even if Americans like to think it is.

I disagree with both parts of this. I was taught in school in the UK in the 90's that if for some reason you don't know the gender of the person you're refering to it's acceptable to say 'they' as a single person pronoun. Technically "he or she" is gramatically correct, but that would also sound overly formal in most conversations. The example I remember being given is if someone asks who was on the phone it's appropriate to say "I don't know, they hung up without saying anything" but it was also commonly used for hypotheticals, like "if anyone has any questions they can see me in private afterwards". With the rise of the internet it's become more common, because there's more situations where you can be taking to or about someone without knowing their gender.

Similarly I know quite a few people who think it's offensive to call any living thing, especially pets and children 'it'. Back in about 2001 I volunteered at an RSPCA rehoming center and calling the animals 'it' was one of the very minor 'red flags' that tipped staff off that you probably needed an extended check to make sure you actually understood you were adopting a living thing and not simply purchasing a new accessory for your house or a toy for your children. On it's own probably not an issue but it was often a first sign to look out for other troubling behaviour.

I think the idea of using 'they' as a gender neutral pronoun for a specific, known individual who does not wish to be called he or she is relatively new, but the idea of using it as a gender neutral singular as well as a plural has been around in the UK for decades.

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They, Them, and Their have been used in the singular since the 1400s.

Any grammar Nazism over it is due to rules of formal writings that post date the singular use made by someone with a stick stuck into a lower orifice.

For instance if someone tells you that somebody called for you and left a message what would your reply be?

"What did they want?"

Obviously a singular usage, not a plural one.

Dragons have been gendered in this game and in GW1. Kunavang, and Glint are both referred to as females, and Kralk as a male. Kralk even calls out for his own mother.Could be that Jormag is more of the gender non conforming type though /shrug. Current culture influences writer's decisions.

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@Danikat.8537 said:

@"pareth.3847" said:I actually assumed that Jormag was male, as he's sometimes referred to as male, at least I seem to remember it that way. And considering what's done to female icebrood, the Jormag worshipping cult isn't very female friendly.

Jormag is voiced by a woman and referred to as "they", which is gender neutral in English.

I assume many translation will go with "it", since there is no gender neutral pronoun in most languages (at least the ones I know; you usually say "he or she" or you use gender neutral references like "the person").

They and them are plural terms in English not really suitable as gender neutral terms in a singular sense due to the confusion they can cause.In the UK we do not use they/them commonly as singular pronouns and for a great deal of people it doesn't sound right at all and they don't like using them in that way.

For the most part it's Americans that use they/them as singular pronouns these days, but they are arguably an exception rather than the rule in the English speaking world.I'm not sure how many European languages have them but there are some that do, Finnish I know does use gender neutral pronouns commonly for everyone.

As far as English goes the most commonly used gender neutral terms I can think of is actually, dude and guys which are used all the time in regular conversation with both genders by both genders.It's not uncommon at all to hear a woman greet a group of female friends by saying "what's up guys"

@"Hannelore.8153" said:Refering to Jormag as they/them, isn't about gender. Its because in English its offensive to refer to any sentient being as "it", which is used for objects. Characters who refer to Jormag as they/them are just recognising Jormag in a respectful way.

This again is more of an American thing really, in Europe we don't consider "it" to be offensive, specially when referring to non human living things like animals.When someone gets a new dog for example it's perfectly acceptable to ask "is it a boy or girl?" or "what gender/sx is it?"Those questions are also perfectly normal to ask about new born human's as well.Americans are the ones that mostly push the narrative that "It" is offensive but that is not commonly accepted around the English speaking world even if Americans like to think it is.

I disagree with both parts of this. I was taught in school in the UK in the 90's that if for some reason you don't know the gender of the person you're refering to it's acceptable to say 'they' as a single person pronoun. Technically "he or she" is gramatically correct, but that would also sound overly formal in most conversations. The example I remember being given is if someone asks who was on the phone it's appropriate to say "I don't know, they hung up without saying anything" but it was also commonly used for hypotheticals, like "if anyone has any questions they can see me in private afterwards". With the rise of the internet it's become more common, because there's more situations where you can be taking to or about someone without knowing their gender.

Yes you are correct that in some context they/them are used as singular but I would argue this is quite specific.In most ways they/them are used as plural not singular pronouns which is why they tend to cause a lot of confusion when used as replacements for he/she in most context.

Similarly I know quite a few people who think it's offensive to call any living thing, especially pets and children 'it'. Back in about 2001 I volunteered at an RSPCA rehoming center and calling the animals 'it' was one of the very minor 'red flags' that tipped staff off that you probably needed an extended check to make sure you actually understood you were adopting a living thing and not simply purchasing a new accessory for your house or a toy for your children. On it's own probably not an issue but it was often a first sign to look out for other troubling behaviour.

Do you have any context examples for those red flags?I could understand if the individual consistently referred to the animal as an it despite knowing the gender.But like the examples I provided in the last post, using it in a question to ascertain the gender of the baby or animal has always been normal and acceptable in British society and in context where the gender is unknown.. it's also generally acceptable in certain context where the gender is known as well such as "I saw your dog today, It was down by the river" etcWe tend not to do this with humans largely because of perception and the ability to mostly identify by gender on sight due to certain traits.Mistakes still happen though, I myself have been mistaken for a woman multiple times in the past due to being very skinny (underweight) back then and having very long hair down to my bottom, stopped happening so much after I put on some weight, muscle mass and grew out a beard to go with the hair but it was never something I got angry or offended about, was kinda funny tbh lol

In the case of baby's we even have very common celebratory balloons and stuffed animals etc that say "it's a boy/girl"In that context they quite literally use "it" as a pronoun for the baby to declare the new gendered one.

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@"Gorgaan Peaudesang.8324" said:In French, Jormag is referred as "Le dragon des glaces". Jormag is a "he".Yes, just as Fueki said, and the French refer to any animal by the grammatical gender for their species name, until they know of their sex (the same for human nationalities, factions, groups, by the way, but it's a debated question), and eventually get rid of their species name, except for those that are/were close to the man (livestock, game, pets), and can have different names for both males and females, because it was useful to discriminate between the two sexes. Likewise, there is a rarely used form for "she-dragon", "dragonne", and it would be used only if it's "appropriate" (useful/required/polite) to refer to her as being a female entity. So long as it's not, she can be named with its generic species name, which happens (for this species) to be a grammatical masculine in French ( and nothing prevents from speaking about a (neutral/species generic) dragon, hence using grammatical gender "he", and using "she" to refer to her on closer terms in the following sentence.The same arises in English when calling a sheep. So long as it's not "appropriate" to call it a ram, a male sheep can be referred to with its species name, a sheep.

Now, if those primal entities are not deemed to be gendered, because it is not meaningful nor even physiologically right, then the French should resort to their default (neutral) gender, which is masculine grammatical, as in most, if not all, Latin-derived languages that have lost their neutral grammatical gender for over a millennium.

The other question is, if we want to stress the respect Tyrians owe those entities, is: "Should we use a capital when we refer to a spirit of nature?". Should we use "It", "She", "He"? For they are not common dragons, like their avatars in people's mind, they are the Ones.

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Was Kralkatorrik male? Yes. Aurine calls him grandfather. He also laid an egg...because Glint.

Jormag seems masculine. But I am sure he can lay eggs too. Just like any dragon I guess. I agree with others that he should have just been called he, or even it. The "they" thing just feels like a try-hard move in instances where it is forced and unnatural.

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@"firedragon.8953" said:Was Kralkatorrik male? Yes. Aurine calls him grandfather. He also laid an egg...because Glint.

Jormag seems masculine. But I am sure he can lay eggs too. Just like any dragon I guess. I agree with others that he should have just been called he, or even it. The "they" thing just feels like a try-hard move in instances where it is forced and unnatural.

Yea we've had this discussion about the se*less nature of dragons before.They all pretty much reproduce alone without the need for a partner so gender is pretty much an irrelevant concept for them and only really exists for us as players.Glint and Aurine may have had female pronouns.. Kralk and Mordremoth male pronouns but ultimately none of them have genders nor are they biologically male or female.

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@"Amanda Whitemoon.6173" said:i think we need to invent a new word for either the singular or plural , im going for maybe "Si" (from sibbling, wich is also gender neutral)Last time my country decided that specifying an unknown as a male or female gender was offensive and thus needed to invent a new word for it, we hence forward refer to them as the English word for chicken.

I'm thinking that instead of "dragon" (being associated with males), we just refer to them as "drag"?

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  • 1 month later...

Just a short update: The German version is now back to male pronouns.During the previous stories the translation team was a bit unsure maybe, trying out avoiding all pronouns or even making up nonsensical grammar, but now they're back at where they started.

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@"Teratus.2859" said:We tend not to do this with humans largely because of perception and the ability to mostly identify by gender on sight due to certain traits.

That's not really the reason people avoid using "it" as a pronoun. The reason is that it sounds dehumanising, as if referring to the person as an object.

I do actually have a context example: in Wuthering Heights, Heathcliff consistently refers to his son as "it", even though he knows Linton is a boy. It's nothing to do with gender at all here; the point is to show how little he cares about his son as a person, and that he considers him a tool.

Or, as a more GW-specific example: the Weapons Test Engineer: "It keens with outrage, the vermin! As if that will save it!"

He can clearly see Braham is male. He's using "it" because it dehumanises the test subjects, just like calling Braham "vermin".

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