Posted by EAH on September 10, 2003
In Reply to: Help on phrase posted by GPP on September 10, 2003
: : : "The smile on a happy Man "
: : : there is this gentle man whose become a proud father and thats all about what I am trying to portray it..
: : : how can I better frame it....
: : One way is to describe the internal feeling a new parent may have, such as the overused "his heart swelled with pride".
: : I suggest using stronger synonyms..."grin" instead of "smile"...and substituting a physical description that suggests his happiness:
: : An inane/foolish grin spread across the face of the new father...gently cradling his first child/son/daughter.../
: : as he gently held/touched ..../
: : I have used / to designate possible alternatives. Chose one or the other.
: ": For "political correctness" use "their" rather than "his"."
: Well, but certainly not in this instance. It's poor English, but "PC", to use "their" for the possessive case in referring to a single person OF UNKNOWN SEX. When we're talking about a "proud father", chances are we can make an assumption about his sex.
Actually, I was considering the contribution made by the child's mother. Instead of PC, perhaps I should have used "biologically correct". %D
To be properly correct in English, "their" could be substituted if her name, or presence, is expressed in the preceeding sentence.
For the possessive case in referring to a single person OF UNKNOWN SEX, I prefer the written
"s/he" rather than "their".