The subconscious bias of ‘unisex’ baby name trends

The subconscious bias of 'unisex' baby name trends thumbnail

It used to just be one of those quirks reserved for the parents of future celebrities such as Cameron Diaz, Reese Witherspoon, Drew Barrymore, Taylor Swift, Hayden Panettiere and Blake Lively, but now giving baby girls a traditional boy name is on trend.

There are even websites such as 100+ Traditionally Boy Names Perfect For a Baby Girl to help new parents with their choice.

Evelyn, Mackenzie, Billie, Frankie, Addison, Tyler, Dylan, Jordan, Luca, Alex and Charlie now pepper the most popular girls’ names lists for last year in Australia.

While some of these are now accepted as girls’ names, they all started out as male names.

In the US names such as Avery, Riley, Kennedy, Peyton, Taylor, Quinn, and Bailey are popular for girls. Blake Lively recently called her baby girl James.

But before we chalk this up to another victory for just how liberal and post-gender we’ve all become, it’s worth asking: where are all the boys being called traditionally girls’ names?

Read more on Daily Life

One thought on “The subconscious bias of ‘unisex’ baby name trends

  1. This has gone on for a long time. Meredith used to be a boys name. Kate Burridge of Monash Uni spoke about this once and she mentioned the requirements for a girls name to finish with an ey or ay like Bradley and Ashley and to have a more complex sounds. Modern boys name should be shorter and have a dominant vowel and the last requirement being that they had not previously been used as a girls name. Hence the name Kate although fits as a boys name will never make it back the other way. This seems to be a linguistic one way street.

    Good article.

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