Thursday, May 1, 2008

Naming Part III

Okay so I hyphenated my name about 9 months ago. And it's long and unpronounceable. I mean my maiden name was unpronounceable so it was unavoidable. But my husband's name shouldn't be hard, and everyone mispronounces it anyway. I know it's five syllables long. And there are a lot of consonants that like to run together. So when I've introduced myself, I've kind of been apologetic about it. You know, yeah I know it's hard to pronounce and I've just made it that much more difficult for you to remember my name, it's okay... mumble, mumble, mumble

But today my attention was called to the gold-medal holder of unpronounceable hyphenated names: Elisabeth Schussler Fiorenza. Dr. Schussler Fiorenza was a president of the Society of Biblical Literature and is a prominent scholar in feminist theology. And it took me years to wrap my tongue around that German/Italian last name. While talking about one of Schussler Fiorenza's contributions to feminist theology, it was mentioned that she made known her preference of being referred to by her whole last name instead of just Fiorenza. I heard no apology, I heard no justification. It's her name, and that's what she should be called.

So I'm going to stop apologizing for my hyphenated name. It takes practice, but it's my name. And that means it deserves respect not apology.

Update: I added the part 3. We've got a series folks.

2 comments:

alaina said...

do it (the stop apologizing thing). nobody likes someone that apologizes for things that they aren't really sorry about anyway.
its quirky. everyone needs a good quirk. :)

brnh said...

Spoken by a lovely, quirky person. I'm sorry for being sorry when I'm not really sorry. ;-)