Mademoiselle … No More

Do you consider yourself a ‘Madame’ or a ‘Mademoiselle’? A ‘Senorita’ or ‘Signorina’? Well, it doesn’t matter in the French language anymore as a town in Western France (Cesson-Sevigne) has banned the word ‘Mademoiselle’ (or ‘Miss’ – UK equivalent) from all of its official documents. The reason for this is that the town’s community believes that women should not be defined by their status anymore. Men have always been addressed as ‘Monsieur’ once they become teenagers.

The term ‘Miss’ is usually addressed to young, unmarried women and is meant to be a sign of respect of that status. This term of address can be heard in many countries and languages around the world but is not used as frequently as it once was. According to the Cesson-Sevigne community in France, a more general term of address for women, such as ‘Madame’, would avoid misunderstandings and discrimination.

Read more about the meaning and history of the word ‘Mademoiselle’ and why is has been banned in Cesson-Sevigne, France