July 20, 2008

Gay marriage leads to new word for “maiden name”

Filed under: Dutch first by Branko Collin @ 8:01 am

Civil servants who felt that the term “maiden name” might not be appreciated by the participants in an all-male wedding asked the Nederlandse Taalunie (Dutch Language Union) to come up with a new phrase. The Union is not in the habit of creating words but asked around (Dutch) and found out that some people had already started using “geboortenaam” (lit. birth name, and not, as one commenter at the Queerty blog would have it, gay birth name). :-)

An alternative, “geslachtsnaam” (inherited name) was rejected for being cumbersome and old-fashioned, according to the Onze Taal blog (Dutch).

Photo by CarbonNYC, distributed under a Creative Commons Attribution 2.0 Generic license.

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January 22, 2008

Using husband’s name costly affair

Filed under: General by Branko Collin @ 12:13 pm

Researchers at the University of Tilburg (Dutch) have discovered that married women who use their husband’s family name are generally seen as more dependent, less ambitious and less intelligent. Subjects were told that they were introduced to Peter and Helga Bosboom at a party (Helga using her husband’s name), and when asked rated Helga as caring, dependent, less intelligent and emotional. Using a hyphenated last name has the same effect.

The researchers estimated that using the “wrong” last name could even cost a woman EUR 361,708 during her life time. In an experiment in which subjects were asked to take the place of a human resources manager, women that used their husband’s name were generally rated for jobs that paid EUR 861.21 less than those for women that retained their maiden names.

According to Dutch law, both men and women keep their own family name when marrying, but both the wedded and divorced are allowed to use their own name and that of their (ex)partner in any combination in public.

(Via Jong Nieuws.)

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