Winners of the Name of the Year 2021 Announced


Every year, the American Name Society votes for the Name of the Year during its annual meeting. Anyone may nominate a name by sending a nominated name and a short justification to the coordinator of the Name of the Year election. Last-minute nominations are accepted also from the floor during the ANS annual meeting. Nominations are judged based on their linguistic innovation, potential to influence language use, and ability to capture national attention. Popularity or notoriety is not deemed important.

Name of the Year: Great Resignation (socioeconomic trend in 2021 in which millions of employees left their jobs)

Artistic Name Squid Game (the blockbuster South Korean survival film on Netflix)

Trade Name: Cyber Ninjas (partisan-backed company that reviewed votes in Maricopa County, Arizona after the national election of democratic candidate Joseph R. Biden to become the 46th US President)

Personal Name: Karen (a name that is increasingly used as pejorative term to label a person considered to be racist, arrogant, and rude. CAUTION: This negative usage has caused considerable damage to people who are actually named Karen.)  

E-Name: #FreeBritney (the movement to support singer Britney Spears in her legal battle to end a conservatorship in which her father was given the right control her estate and make decisions about her mental and physical health) 

Place Name: United States Capitol (the site where a mob of thousands of pro-Trump supporters attacked the US Congress in a violent attempt to impede the ratification of Joseph R. Biden’s election as the 46th President of the United States)

Miscellaneous Name: C.R.T. (the often pejoratively used abbreviation for “Critical Race Theory”, an academic framework used for examining the historical relationship between race, law, privilege, and identity).