Featured Image
Le Petit RobertShutterstock

PARIS (LifeSiteNews) — A major French dictionary has introduced a gender-neutral pronoun in its online edition, sparking much controversy among French academics and politicians.

The new pronoun “iel” (and its variants “ielle,” “iels,” and “ielles”) was added a few weeks ago to the online edition of Le Petit Robert, one of the most famous and prestigious French dictionaries, often used in French schools by students and teachers alike as the main reference for word spelling and definitions.

The pronoun “iel” and its variants are a mix of the traditional French third person masculine and feminine pronouns: “il” and “elle” in the singular, and “ils” and “elles” in the plural.

The decision is currently sparking much controversy in France.

On Tuesday, François Jolivet, a French MP and member of Emmanuel Macron’s party La République en marche took to Twitter to contest the move. In his tweet, Jolivet included a letter he sent to the French Academy to express his disapproval.

Le Petit Robert, a dictionary considered as a reference, just included the words “iel, ielle, iels, and ielles” on its website. Its authors are therefore activists of a cause that is not French: wokism. I have written to the French Academy,” tweeted Jolivet.

— Article continues below Petition —
HELP AUSTRALIANS restore their freedom by protesting outside YOUR Australian Embassy - Dec. 4th - US
  Show Petition Text
4993 have signed the petition.
Let's get to 5000!
Thank you for signing this petition!
Add your signature:
  Show Petition Text
Keep me updated via email on this petition and related issues.
Keep me updated via email on this petition and related issues.

Freedom-loving Australians are sending out an urgent call for help, a veritable SOS.

Over the past year and a half, Australia's democracy has been replaced by a type of medical fascism which has grasped control of power by using police state tactics.

In that time, freedoms have been curtailed or suppressed altogether and human rights have been abused, often with the use of the police force.

Please WATCH this video from our friends at Reignite Democracy Australia to better understand how BAD it is right now in Australia.

And, the situation just continues to deteriorate, so much so that our friends Down Under are now asking for outside help.

We simply must come to their aid! But, what can we do?

Please consider participating in the following two action items:

1) SAVE THE DATE and ATTEND a Pro-Freedom Rally on DEC. 4th (12pm, local time) at the Australian Embassy in Washington, DC, (address below), or at an Australian consulate office in one of the cities listed below

2) Please SIGN and SHARE this petition, directed to the Australian Ambassador to the United States, H.E. Arthur Sinodinos, asking him to:

  • End the lockdowns in Australia
  • End police brutality in Australia
  • End mandatory vaccinations in Australia
  • Restore the freedoms of speech, assembly and travel in Australia

Remember, after signing, please make a note of this important date and time (and address, below): Saturday, December 4th, 2021, 12pm.

And, please commit to peaceful protest in support of Australian freedom at one of the locations below on that date!

Our friends Down Under are reaching their limits. So, we must now join them in their struggle to retain their freedoms and human rights against police brutality and medical dictatorship.

Thank you for taking part in this important campaign.


'‘SOS from Australia’: Freedom activists plead for political asylum from COVID regime' -

Click here to learn more about the the December 4th protest, including helpful messaging for signs you can make at home to take with you on the day:

LOCATIONS and PHONE NUMBERS of the Australian Embassy in the United States, as well as their consular offices in Chicago, Honolulu, Houston, Los Angeles, New York and San Francisco. [Please use the phone number to politely, but firmly object to the oppression of the people of Australia if you can't go to the protest in person.]:

Embassy - Washington, DC
1145 17th St NW,
Washington DC,
Telephone: +1 202 797 3000

Chicago Consulate
123 North Wacker Drive, Suite 1330
Chicago, Illinois 60606
Telephone: +1 312 419 1480

Honolulu Consulate
Penthouse, 1000 Bishop Street
Honolulu, Hawaii 96813
Telephone: +1 808 529 8100

Houston Consulate
3009 Post Oak Blvd, Suite 1310
Houston, Texas 77056
Telephone: +1 832 962 8420

Los Angeles Consulate
2029 Century Park East, 31st Floor
Los Angeles, California 90067
Telephone: +1 310 229 2300

New York Consulate
150 East 42nd Street, 34th Floor
New York, New York 10017-5612
Telephone: +1 212 351 6500

San Francisco Consulate
575 Market Street, Suite 1800
San Francisco, California 94105
Telephone: +1 415 644 3620

  Hide Petition Text

In his letter to the French academy, Jolivet argued that the decision constitutes “an obvious ideological intrusion and an attack on our language and its influence.”

“As guardians of our language, could you tell me whether the French Academy has discussed this issue?” he asked the academy.

“If not, this orientation by Le Petit Robert would mark the introduction of ‘inclusive’ writing in our language, no doubt signalling the advent of woke ideology, synonymous with the destruction of our values,” he said.

The French Minister of National Education, Jean-Michel Blanquer, also voiced his opposition to the addition of the new pronoun.

“I, of course, support François Jolivet in his opposition to Le Petit Robert,” Blanquer wrote on Twitter. “Inclusive writing is not the future of the French language. Our students are consolidating their fundamental knowledge right now, they don’t need this as a reference.”

Gilbert Collard, a member of the European Parliament and member of the French right-wing party Rassemblement National also criticized the decision and accused Le Robert editions of wokism.

Even on the French left there were negative reactions.

“Woke ideology at work in Le Robert,” tweeted André Vallini, a former senator from the French socialist party.

In a statement published Wednesday on the dictionary’s website, Charles Bimbenet, editorial director of Le Robert editions, defended the insertion of the pronoun in the online version of the dictionary, and explained that researchers at Le Petit Robert had noticed a growing use of the pronoun “iel” in recent months. Bimbenet said that its introduction in the dictionary was discussed at an October editorial committee.

“Do I need to remind people that Le Robert, like every dictionary, includes words conveying ideas of the past, the present and the future, or of societal trends, etc.?” he asked rhetorically.


Commenting Guidelines

LifeSiteNews welcomes thoughtful, respectful comments that add useful information or insights. Demeaning, hostile or propagandistic comments, and streams not related to the storyline, will be removed.

LSN commenting is not for frequent personal blogging, on-going debates or theological or other disputes between commenters.

Multiple comments from one person under a story are discouraged (suggested maximum of three). Capitalized sentences or comments will be removed (Internet shouting).

LifeSiteNews gives priority to pro-life, pro-family commenters and reserves the right to edit or remove comments.

Comments under LifeSiteNews stories do not necessarily represent the views of LifeSiteNews.