Kirsten Small, an anatomy professor at Australia’s Griffith University, is urging the World Health Organization to change the name of body parts she thinks are “irrelevant and misogynistic,” according to American Web Media. Professor Small says that, since some body parts are not gender-specific, their names should be changed to reflect the population as a whole, not just males.
Small, who also is a practicing obstetrician and gynecologist, told The Courier-Mail: “We have a personal choice to decolonize our language, and these historical terms will fade out.” She says she hopes these changes in nomenclature will take hold throughout the Western world, including the United States.
While the professor did not give specific examples of body parts with offending names, speculation has been rampant in the academic and scientific communities. Many suggest rebranding the “Achilles’ tendon,” named for the figure in Greek mythology. Some wish to do away with the term “Eustachian tube,” named after Bartolomeo Eustachi, the man who discovered it. (Personally, I wouldn’t hear of it.) And nearly everyone agrees that the term “Adam’s Apple” has to go, as it is the Achilles’ Heel of body part phraseology, named as it was for both a male and a Biblical figure.
I’m sure there are many more grievously misnamed body parts out there, begging to be “decolonized.” Perhaps progressive anatomists will even manage to decolonize the colon.
After all, one can take offense at anything and everything…if one is Small-minded.
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