Vol. 62 No. 1 (2014)
Research Article

Unisex Names for Babies Born in Pennsylvania 1990–2010

Published 2014-03-01


  • Convincing Ground,
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Most first names are exclusively popular for females or males. A minority of first names are unisex, defined as being given with substantial frequency to both genders in the same population in the same year. First-name frequencies for births in Pennsylvania in 1990, 1995, 2000, 2005, and 2010 provided information on babies given unisex names. Children of a White mother were compared with children of a Black mother. The unisex names were divided into two types of gender preference or consistency, from 1990 to 2010. Change usually was from a small majority of males to a large majority of females. Consistency generally was a preference for males. Females more often than males therefore were given a name that was consistently more popular for the opposite gender. Great diversity of names given in Pennsylvania contributed to the occurrence of unisex names.


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