Tuesday, March 2, 2021

Named


At the heart of much speculative fiction (and fiction in general) is a question. What if? On Tuesdays I like to throw one out there and see what you make of it. Do with it as you please. If a for-instance is not specified, feel free to interpret that instance as you wish. And if you find this becomes a novel-length answer, I'd appreciate a thank you in the acknowledgements.
😉

Today's question comes out of a weird train of thought I had the other day. I won't go into the whole thing, but I started musing on people who change their name for various reasons. I'm talking about people who for whatever reason feel their name doesn't fit them. Or trans people who switch their name to fit their gender. Or people who pick a more Americanized version of their name to go by. And it got me thinking. . .

What if we were required to use a name that was given to us by someone else? I won't specify who that someone else is, only that if you chose to change your name, you couldn't pick what name you change it to yourself.

16 comments:

  1. I wouldn't change it if I couldn't pick the name, it could be something worse!

    ReplyDelete
  2. But, Liz, we already use a name given to us by someone else! Our parents! Sometimes the name just doesn't fit. I wouldn't change my name (although I've never liked it, and as a child there were a bunch of us named Lisa) unless I was paid plenty! And if the one naming me knew me well and wasn't a jerk or joker.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Oddly, I just got an email saying my comment was blocked. I came back, and apparently it wasn't.

      Delete
    2. That's kind of where the idea came from. The name most of us continue to use is a name that we did not choose. But some people change their name. They choose a name to change it to. But what if...? I have some meandering thoughts sometimes.

      Delete
  3. Thats a tough one. A name indicative of prestige, power, wealth and one babes would swoon over would be nice

    ReplyDelete
  4. Since I can't pick it, I'm not changing it.

    ReplyDelete
  5. I would feel like 007, on a mission!

    ReplyDelete
  6. I defend my name to the death! I was brought up Catholic(my dad's wishes) and went to Catholic school. When I had to go through Confirmation, the priest and teachers said we had to choose another name for Confirmation. I was putting on my gown(white thing) and told them I want my name but they told me I could not have my name and that it must be a different name. They tried to tell me that my name was never a saint and I corrected them and my mom, who was there, also told them there was the Swedish saint Birgitta. They would have none of that. I refused and said this was criminal! My mom was pleading and I said I want my name. My mom got angry and said then "we have to go home and you will not be in this!" I said "Great" and started to take off that stupid robe. My mom's threat backfired so she finally told me that daddy would be very sad to not have me confirmed and it would hurt him. That did it so I went with Maria..my middle name but..nope I couldn't have that one either. Finally I chose Elizabeth because that was my friend's name. How stupid is that!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I wasn't telling you you had to change your name. I said *if* you were to... I knew there was a reason I was a lapsed Catholic. (I never did Confirmation.)

      Delete
  7. I never liked my name growing up because people never knew quite how to spell it. (I pronounce it E-lana) I swore (when I was younger) that I would change it when my parents were gone, but I didn't. Maybe I would get a worse name if someone had to pick one out for me. I'm keeping it!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I think every teen toys with changing their name. So few of us do, I think we all kind of grow out of it.

      Delete
    2. I didn't know you pronounced it that way! I had a niece (for a while at least, turned out she wasn't my brother's daughter after all, and the courts didn't even give him visitation after he was the only dad she knew) named Alana, pronounced the way yours isn't!

      Delete
  8. Birgit and Alana's stories made me kinda sad. :( But regarding the question, I've put on my 'writing cap'. Heh...

    I envision such a renaming having magical implications, such as a way to keep power within certain bloodlines. Or the ceremonial service could be commissioned to instill a protective charm. After all, many stories imply magic users keep their name secret.

    Thanks for fueling my imagination. Be well!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Ah, those would be very good reasons for naming being a thing someone else does. I hadn't considered the why.

      Delete
  9. Well, I guess none of us really were able to choose our names. We have the ones our parents gave us. It would be kind of weird for someone to legally change your name to something else without your say. I guess I would use my own name as an alias so as not to be tracked by whoever wanted to change my name.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I did not specify that you had to change your name. That would be an interesting story, the being forced to change your name.

      Delete

I appreciate your comments.

I respond to comments via email, unless your profile email is not enabled. Then, I'll reply in the comment thread. Eventually. Probably.