Mx (title)

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Mx (/ˈmɪks/ "mix", /ˈmʌks/ MUKS, /məks/ məks),[1][2] is an English language neologistic honorific that indicates a gender other than male or female, or no gender. It was developed as an alternative to common gendered honorifics, such as Mr. and Ms., in the early 1980s. It is often used by nonbinary people, as well as those who do not wish to reveal or be referred to by their gender. It is a gender-neutral title that is now widely accepted by the Government of the United Kingdom and many businesses in the United Kingdom.[3] It is included in all major English dictionaries.

Etymology[edit]

The word was first proposed in the late 1970s, with widespread usage since 1985.[4][5] The "x" is intended to stand as a wildcard character and does not necessarily imply a "mixed" gender, although this interpretation can also be intended.[6]

Usage[edit]

In 2013 Brighton and Hove City Council in Sussex, England, voted to allow the use of Mx on council forms,[7] and in 2014 the Royal Bank of Scotland included the title as an option.[8] In 2015, recognition spread more broadly across UK institutions, including the Royal Mail, government agencies responsible for documents such as passports and driving licences, most major banks, several other companies, and UK charity Battersea Dogs & Cats Home.[9]

The title is now accepted by the Department for Work and Pensions, HM Revenue and Customs, the National Health Service and many councils, universities, insurance companies and utility retailers in the United Kingdom. The House of Commons of the United Kingdom confirmed in 2015 that it would accept the use of Mx by MPs.[10] In 2017, HSBC banks announced the addition of Mx alongside several other gender-neutral titles as options for their customers. The March 30 announcement coincided with the International Transgender Day of Visibility, celebrated the following day.[11]

In 2015, Mx was included in the Oxford English Dictionary,[12] and in April 2016 it was added to Merriam-Webster Unabridged.[13] In 2016, Metro Bank became the first bank to offer Mx on its forms (though other banks had amended records to Mx on request prior to this),[14] and HSBC adopted the title in 2017.[15]

Mx is increasing in usage, but remains uncommon in the United States.[16]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Definition of Mx". Oxford English Dictionaries. Retrieved 6 January 2017. 
  2. ^ "On the pronunciation of Mx". Spacious Perspicacious. 27 Nov 2014. Retrieved 22 May 2015. 
  3. ^ "The Growing Use of Mx as a Gender-inclusive Title in the UK" (PDF). UKtrans.into. 20 August 2013. Retrieved 22 Nov 2014. 
  4. ^ "Now pick Mr, Mrs, Miss, Ms . . . or Mx for no specific gender". The Sunday Times. 3 May 2015. Retrieved 4 May 2015. 
  5. ^ Olivia Goldhill (11 May 2015). "What's it like to be a Mx?". The Telegraph. Retrieved 1 January 2016. 
  6. ^ Nat Titman (28 August 2014). "When was the Mx gender-inclusive title created?". Practical Androgyny. Retrieved 4 April 2016. 
  7. ^ "Mx (Mixter) title adopted in Brighton for transgender people". BBC News. 10 May 2013. Retrieved 13 February 2014. 
  8. ^ Saner, Emine (17 November 2014). "RBS: the bank that likes to say Mx". The Guardian. Retrieved 26 January 2015. 
  9. ^ "Mr, Mrs, Miss... and Mx: Transgender people will be able to use new title on official documents". Daily Mail. 4 May 2015. Retrieved 5 May 2015. 
  10. ^ McCormick, Joseph Patrick (26 May 2015). "MPs given gender neutral option when entering House of Commons". Pink News. Retrieved 4 April 2016. 
  11. ^ Brignall, Miles (30 March 2017). "HSBC offers choice of transgender titles for bank's customers". The Guardian. Retrieved 10 April 2017. 
  12. ^ Tanya Pai (31 December 2015). "10 words that explain 2015". Vox. Retrieved 1 January 2016. 
  13. ^ "A Gender-Neutral Honorific". Merriam-Webster. Retrieved 23 August 2016. 
  14. ^ Clark, Charles. "A British bank has become the first in the world to offer a third gender option for 'non-binary' customers". Business Insider UK. Retrieved 4 June 2017. 
  15. ^ "HSBC adds new transgender titles including M and Misc". BBC News. BBC. Retrieved 4 June 2017. 
  16. ^ "A Gender-Neutral Honorific: Mx: Words We're Watching". Merriam-Webster,. September 2017.