A rose by any other name?

Discussion in 'General Education' started by newbie87, Feb 19, 2010.

  1. newbie87

    newbie87 Comrade

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    I've known people of all classes and races who've wanted to name their kids unconventional names or names they out right made up. :unsure: This seems to be a trend with celebrities. My mom says kids with "weird" names won't go far in live. What do you think? Do you think a name can hinder a person? Or do you think schools(colleges and ones that do admitance) and jobs have factors that weigh more than names? What's in a name?
     
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  3. gottagoodgig

    gottagoodgig Companion

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    There are plenty of folks with unique names that are happy, successful people! I personally love unique names and both of my kids have fun, unusual names. I don't think it will hinder them. It's very much the norm here in CO. If you aren't going to get into a college, or get hired for a job, because of your name...would you really want to work there in the first place? (We also did choose more mainstream/preppy middle names if our boys decide they want to go that route...)

    I'm trying to think of successful folks with unique names...Cokie Roberts? Condoleeza Rice? Oprah? Tiger? (well, maybe not...)..anyone else have one?
     
  4. JustMe

    JustMe Virtuoso

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    I like unique names, but over-the-top unique spellings annoy me. But can a name hinder a person? You know, I'm not saying it's impossible, but I like to think not. I certainly don't agree with your mom when she says that people with weird names won't go far in life, and I don't have to think too hard to find examples of people who have proved her wrong.

    That said, I've said countless times and heard others comment that someone's name suits them perfectly, as though names have personalities. But I don't think someone will necessarily live up to their name, and if they do, it's probably coincidental. My cousin knows someone named Cutter and apparently he's a fine young man because she was interested in dating him. I don't think there's a need to hide blades from him any more than there is a chance of someone with the last name of Shoemaker to work in the shoe industry. :)

    Unique names that I would classify as just outright stupid...well, I find that bordering on cruel and hope the children find a nickname to adopt in their early adolescence.
     
  5. Jem

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    My ex had a female name. He was always getting e-mails addressed to 'Ms. So-and-so'. I can imagine that affected him.
     
  6. Securis

    Securis Cohort

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    The answer to your question is yes....and no. How many children in the world have unique, unconventional names? Each an individual, interacting and reacting in a world of umpteen million people. Some will pass life's test with flying colors and others will be disastrous disappointments and every other level of measurable success. That's the sum of it. I deal with out of the ordinary names all day and every day. Most of the children I teach don't even use their given names, except when I call them, in favor of some nickname like Boo, Toot, Lee-Lee, Red.

    I guess what I am saying is that the answer to the question is subjective depending on a variety of future unpredictable individual circumstances for each child. You'd have to follow every one of them (or at least a good sized sample grouping) to get quantifiable data. And I still doubt that their rate of success would differ in any measurable way to people with common names.
     
  7. sevenplus

    sevenplus Connoisseur

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    OF COURSE they do! I think if a school or job discriminated against someone because of a name, that would be grounds for a lawsuit.

    Thinking that everyone should have have a "conventional" name is short of close-minded, IMO. Think of the various cultures. There are so many unique and beautiful names out there.

    I suppose it's human nature to hear a name and think, "what were the parents thinking?" But you do a person a disservice if you don't get to know THEM.

    One exception to this is the joke my 4-year-old son and I were playing last night. We were pretending his name was "pooper scooper." :lol: Oh, and when I was pg with him, I actually convinced my mom that I was naming him "Knuffle Bunny." :lol:
     
  8. Aliceacc

    Aliceacc Multitudinous

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    My uncle had a very uncoventional name: Cyrinius (si- rine- us)Apparently it was a name with biblical origins.

    He loved it... had it on his license plate and everything.

    I think that, as with so many other things, life is what you make it. Your name is one tiny little part of who you are, and probably the easiest to change.

    One of the kids I teach is black, adopted as a child by a white family. His first name has more of a "WASPY" feel to it, but his middle name is one more typically identifiied as "black." Right now he prefers to go by his middle name, and that's fine.

    My son Brian was adopted from Korea. We kept his Korean middle name. If, at some point, he chooses to "be Korean" he can.

    And I agree with sevenplus-- it any school or place of employment decided ANYTHING on the basis of names, I would steer clear-- such a policy probably isn't a great sign of longevity.
     
  9. czacza

    czacza Multitudinous

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    'Weird' is a matter of interpretation. Some would consider the name 'Barack' weird, yet a person with that name rose to what many would consider the most powerful and prestigious job. I'd say he's gone 'far in life'.
    If someone believes their name carries connotations that are hindering them, they always have the choice of using their initials or middle name instead.
    Schools have many factors that they use as part of their screening processes...GPA, school transcripts, extracurricular activities spring to mind as factors that 'weigh more than names'.
     
  10. Bogart

    Bogart Rookie

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    I think many common names today were probably considered "weird" at one point.
     
  11. JustMe

    JustMe Virtuoso

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    Bogart, absolutely. Just like many names from just a hundred years ago would be weird today.
     
  12. Caesar753

    Caesar753 Multitudinous

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    I think that names can sometimes hold a person back. I'm not saying that this is right, because I think that it is definitely wrong, but....It is what it is. It's hard for me to imagine a successful lawyer or politician being named "Delicious" or "Boy". I've seen both those names, and they honestly make me cringe a little, especially "Delicious" which I've only ever seen as a boy's name.

    I intensely dislike bizarre spellings for names. An "i" instead if a "y" or "ie"....I don't love that, but it's okay. If you're going to change the spelling beyond that, I think it might be a little too weird. Like "Gynifer" instead of "Jennifer". Honestly, it sounds like someone who should be looking at your hoo-ha, not sitting in your science class. You know?

    With that having been said, I do think that unique or unusual names can be very fun. Not everyone needs to be named William or Jane. I especially love traditional/ethnic names. Where I'm originally from, we have a lot of people of Norwegian descent, so we have a lot of Norwegian first names like Bjorn, Oddvar, and Lena.

    So, I'm sorry if I seem harsh or judgmental or something. I believe that people can name their kids whatever they like, but I do hope that they at least think about how it sounds to say "President _____ _____". It's possible. :)
     
  13. catnfiddle

    catnfiddle Moderator

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    One of my best and brightest students has the unfortunate name of Tastee. I think it's forced her to be more personally dignified. She definitely has my respect!
     
  14. Tasha

    Tasha Phenom

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    Barack Obama!

    I think it comes down to the line between unique/unusual and silly/over-the-top names.
     
  15. newbie87

    newbie87 Comrade

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    Wait, Barack is a "real" name, right? As in I'm assuming that's how it's spelled where it orginated from and his mom/dad/whoever didn't make it up. I'm thinking there are other "Barack"s in the world. I don't know if I can ever imagine a president named Tastee. :( I hope that doesn't sound mean, but it's true.
     
  16. Toak

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    There is a lot of indepth research on the issue names.

    If you have twins named George and Jamal, who live in the same household and get the exact same grades, George is significantly more like to be referred to gifted and talented programs than Jamal (and Jamal is more likely to be referred than his twin Egyptian)

    Chen however is significantly more likely to be referred than George.

    First they looked at all the names of the kids referred, and when they noticed the naming trend they looked at twins raised in the same household with the same social activities to rule out other influences

    They same trend also holds true for getting called into interview about prospective jobs. Precious will get statistically significant fewer calls in response to her steller resume than Latisha will
     
  17. newbie87

    newbie87 Comrade

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    ^^^Interesting, where did you find this out? I'd love to see more.
     
  18. Toak

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    Part of what I had to research in college. I believe it was accessed through one of the academic research journals so don't know how easy it will be for me to get access again now that I'm not a student
     
  19. czacza

    czacza Multitudinous

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    But could anyone imagine when he was born a President Barack? Could anyone imagine that 10 years ago? Not many. As a child and high school student, he went by 'Barry'.
    OK, maybe a President Tastee is difficult to imagine, but hopefully professional educators would not judge the student Tastee by her name.
     
  20. kimrandy1

    kimrandy1 Enthusiast

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    I don't think I judge a child by his/her name, but I almost certainly do judge the parents. I can pretty much tell what a mom of an Addison is going to be like versus a mom of a Precious, or a mom of an Akhil versus a mom of a Peyton. Certain names are "yuppy parent " names and other are "white trashy" parent names, and others are "project kid" names. This is probably wrong of me, I know, but I can't help it....

    See...imagine a parent of :
    Britni
    Lexis
    J-den
    Temesje
    Luke
    Gavin

    See what I mean?? Now, I'm not really judging those parents - I've had great relationships with parents from all walks of life, and I've had more challenging relationships with parents from all walks of life, too. I find that there are great, involved parents in all areas, and awful ones, too.
     
  21. catnfiddle

    catnfiddle Moderator

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    This makes me wonder how my niece Gloria will be seen as she grows up. It's an old-fashioned name after her late great-grandmother.
     
  22. Aliceacc

    Aliceacc Multitudinous

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    A freind of mine went to college with Geraldo Rivera. Only then he was "Gerry Rivers" because his real name was seen, at least my him, as being "too ethnic." Sad.
     
  23. yarnwoman

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    My son has an unusual name (At least here in the United States) his name is Axel and most people seem to think that I was infatuated with Guns and Roses when he was born. I wasn't, I had simply wanted to honor my grandfather and named my son after him. Now, his firends on the other hand think his name is the coolest thing since sliced bread. This is because there is a video game character named Axel.
     
  24. TeacherNY

    TeacherNY Maven

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    There was a student I went to high school with who had a difficult name to pronounce. I can't even remember his name since I couldn't pronounce it either. Teachers seemed to call on him less because they had such a hard time saying it.
     
  25. JustMe

    JustMe Virtuoso

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    TeacherNY, that is really unfortunate. There have been a couple of names I just can't seem to pronounce, but that didn't prevent me from calling on the students and welcoming the students into the classroom family. I was in speech for several years as a child, so I don't know if that plays a role in my inability to pronounce some things, or maybe that in combination with my accent (which I don't think I have, but anyway...:)), but whatever the case, is I find a way to include the child. This year I simply call a student by his last name. I spoke to him and told him it's not his name, it's me and asked if I could address him by his last name which just so happens to be a "first name last name." I do this naturally for some students anyhow, so it isn't an issue with him or his peers. I would much prefer I could get his name, but golly I just can't as much as I've tried, and an alternative name is better than just involving the student less.
     
  26. Jem

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    We're planning on naming our kid an old-fashioned name, either Elsa or Theodore (Teddy for short). I was just thinking about this today, and how vintage names are starting to come back. Among the kindergarten students I work with we have two Ava's, a Sophie, a Jack, a Leo, a MiMi... that's all I've learned so far. ;) All trendy names with a throwback feel. I hope my names don't become trendy...
     
  27. Toak

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    I have a tendency to call Gabrielle Gabriel no matter the effort I make - doesn't take long before the girl says "You can call me Gabby" I hope that name looses popularity soon

    I think its probably because I read the name Gabriel many times before I ever came across Gabrielle
     
  28. catnfiddle

    catnfiddle Moderator

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    Gabrielle and Gabby will both remain popular while Desperate Housewives is on the air. I prefer Lynette out of those names myself, but I have no children.
     
  29. 3Sons

    3Sons Enthusiast

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    Please cite the studies if you have them. I've heard of the effect also, but wouldn't want to throw the information out there without having the actual studies at hand.

    Many recruiters, incidentally, do not send candidate names along to their client companies; they just white out the name and contact information. It's also safer for the companies -- it reduces chances for successful claims of racist hiring.
     
  30. knitter63

    knitter63 Groupie

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    Unique names don't bother me, but strange spellings, or made up spellings of names drives me crazy.
    Reality is, we are ALL unique, regardless of our names. I don't need a strange spelling of my name to "stand out".
     
  31. Toak

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    As I mentioned, these are studies that I've previously done indepth research on - not things I've heard second hand, so I'm not throwing out information that I don't know about. I'd never, and have never, done that. That is equivalent to heresy and i don't know of any educator worthy of the title who would even consider doing such

    And as stated previously, they were all accessed through journal databases of legitimate sources which I no longer have access to having graduated university. I'm sure if someone wants to read them theirselves badly enough they know of a college student they can ask to access the VERY EXPENSIVE paid journal databases

    I have presented my information in the same way you'd expect to get between a casual conversation of phD and master's researchers, and really any undergrad at a decent university, and this forum is a casual conversation. If its good enough to discuss with the college educated, there is no reason a teacher, of all people, should be offput by the presentation

    Withholding knowledge in a discussion just because someone else needs to access it in its original form for you - what you are suggesting I do here- is never an acceptable action. Just imagine if your students tried doing that when you asked them for discussion "SOrry I would answer that because I did write a report on it, but johnny has the science book, so I'll remain quiet and wait for johnny to say what I've researched" - doesn't work very well or benefit anyone does it. (and interestingly in the same post you criticize me for sharing knowledge without links, you've done the exact same thing.Your second paragraph is no different from the post you are criticizing me for having made...)
     
  32. TeacherGroupie

    TeacherGroupie Moderator

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    Toak, you sound offended by 3Sons's request. It is, however, not an unreasonable one.

    Graduate-level researchers, in my experience, don't just mention that studies exist: it's not "I saw a study that says...", it's "Did you see Toak's study that says...?" This is standard academic name-dropping, and it helps establish the bona-fides.

    It's generally possible to find and post links for paid articles via Google (for example) without actually having to access the articles themselves. Since you've done the in-depth research, it shouldn't be hard for you to Google up a couple of links, or at least name some researchers and journals that can shed further light, for those who do care to explore further.
     
  33. maya5250

    maya5250 Comrade

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  34. maya5250

    maya5250 Comrade

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    Sorry TeacherGroupie. I didn't notice that you posted this until after I posted mine.

    I am not trying to offend anybody. I came across the 1st article a long time ago and knew where to access it. Also, I felt that I needed to post other studies as well to indicate that a lot of studies have been done on the effect of ethnic names during hiring processes.

    I really feel strongly about discrimination based on a person's ethnic name. It happens. It's really sad.
     
  35. TeacherGroupie

    TeacherGroupie Moderator

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    Thanks very much, maya5250: I think you've given just what 3Sons was looking for.
     
  36. Toak

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    Teachergroupie, if you look at the post that I was initially criticized for having shared my information, rather than withhold it from everyone, its quite clear why I wasn't able to post a researcher's name - and is this is not a research paper, its unreasonable to expect me to not share that information just because of that.

    Perhaps you have plenty of time to sit on the computer and dig up old links. I don't - for one thing I'm preparing for my social security hearing , I have job placements to prepare for, and quite a few other things that are more important than digging up a link i don't have access to for someone who is offended that information is shared on them in the same format you would find it any casual discussion between academics. As they frequently say at Carnegie mellon, "the smart ones go look something up when it interests them, the dumb ones get offended that they are expected to know how to learn on their own [cleaned up a bit]" I'd like to think the people here are actually somewhat intellligent. But perhaps I expect too much, having spent most of the past 5 years with ivy leaguers rather than staters.

    Of course I am offended. I shared valid information only to be attacked because I shared it without posting information it was clear to everyone I no longer had access too, and told quite directly "don't share what you know unless you forcefeed everything to me." That's just plain stupid. Educators, of all people, are intelligent enough to know that not everyone has access to all the same things they do at all times. And I had provided more than enough information for someone who had even slight honest desire to know the information to look up the studies on their own- unless they preferred to be lazy and ignorant on the topic. Yet rather than go look up the information on her own, someone choose to tell me I shouldn't have posted it because I didn't provide her with what she had the ability to find out herself had she cared to look for it, implying someething was wrong with me for treating her like an academic equal rather than the drudges of education (and in the very same post that she also provided information without a quoted source!!!). Seriously, how could you not be offended when you are criticitized for sharing information, rather then keeping it entirely to yourself, and accused of heresy because you didn't do X,y, and Z which was totally unnecessary in the first place, and in the second place the criticizer was fully aware of why you didn't and couldn't do X, Y and Z before tellling you to withhold your information.

    I know exactly why educational degrees in a particular field are considered completly worthless by that field, minus two exceptons (and there are thousands of programs for this field in the US). But you won't see me saying "Sorry, I know you are asking about this and I know this information, but I'm going to refuse to share it with you since the study I spent two years on wasn't puublished due to my getting very ill. After all, being sick meant I wasn't able to submit in time for the IJ that was paying me for my work, so obviously there is no validity to anything I researched.after all my research was only used to get first program accredited by the world body their accreditation renewed (i'm deliberately withholding the field as that would undeniably identify to all those in that field, and since my disability is known here, I can't afford to have that happen)"
    That argument doesn't hold water any where, any more than saying "do not share information here that you have researched indepthly in the past unless you spoonfeed every last bit of it to me" does. And certainly not on a DISCUSSION forum of all places. If you are that upset about someone discussing something they know with you in the typical academic conversation style you really should avoid all discussions forums
     
  37. catnfiddle

    catnfiddle Moderator

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    WHOA! Can we go back to the pleasant conversation we were having earlier?
     
  38. 3Sons

    3Sons Enthusiast

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    Toak,

    "Attacked"? I simply asked you for the cites if you had them readily available. For all I knew you might have had a full bibliography sitting on your desktop. I did not suggest you hadn't done the research or were making wild claims. Or were committing "heresy". In fact I mentioned that I have indeed heard of the effect. It wasn't clear to me that it was information you no longer had access to, and I didn't cast any judgements about your ability or willingness to provide it. Nor did I ever suggest you should not have posted it. There was no criticism, express or implied.

    Maybe it wasn't my post you were responding to, but a different one that was moderated? Certainly none of the quotes you give were from me, so I'm not entirely sure.

    Please just relax. A simple "I don't have the information available." is fine.

    Incidentally, I grew up around Ivy Leaguers, and can attest that there are plenty of "Staters" who are just as intelligent.

    ETA: To clarify, I did see that you no longer had access to the original articles, but a citation to an article is not the article itself.

    As for my knowledge, it was gained personally by going directly to recruiters in the New York City metro area. It admittedly may not apply to recruiters in other major metropolitan markets, and almost certainly does not apply generally internationally. I do not take "how do you know that?" as an attack.
     
  39. runsw/scissors

    runsw/scissors Phenom

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    It seems this type of thread comes up again and again. I think names these days are getting increasingly unique. That's not necessarily a bad thing, but it does have some problems that could result from it. If a name is too different, the child may be made fun of or mocked. Some names lend themselves to this quite easily. Some names are hard to pronounce or have spellings that make them hard to figure out. Just about everyone knows that Michaela is pronounced (mi-KAY-luh), but I have to admit I found myself rather confused when I saw Mikaelah on a roster once.

    Recently I was online and stumbled across an article about baby names and how they have changed over the decades. Back in the 50's, John was one of the most popular names for boys and about 21% of boys had that name. In the last year or so, Jacob was one of the most popular names for boys but only a little more than 1% of boys had that name. Girls' names have always been more varied, so the numbers are even lower. One of the people interviewed for this article (a child psychologist) said that the bigger variety of names (and name spellings) being given to babies today is an indication that parents want their children to be special, to stand apart and not become (or be seen?) as part of the mainstream. The result could be a trend toward narcism. I don't know that I agree with this, but the fact that entitlement seems to permeate every corner of society is evident. And who's to say that narcisism is far fetched? Look at Tiger Woods, Donald Trump, and others like them. I don't know the name is to blame, but the sociology behind naming trends, birth order, sibling rivalry, etc. is quite interesting to me.
     
  40. runsw/scissors

    runsw/scissors Phenom

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  41. newbie87

    newbie87 Comrade

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    Feb 25, 2010

    ^^^Thanks for posting it.
     

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