Politically Correct Nomenclature

My wife and I watch a lot of shows on HGTV. Shows like “House Hunters,” “House Hunters International,” “Property Brothers,” and “Love It or List It” to name a few.

I’ve noticed that, over the past month or two, when showing houses to prospective buyers, what has always been called the “master bedroom” is now referred to as either the “main bedroom” or the “owners’ suite.”

I guess the use of the word “master” for that bedroom is considered to be sexist these days.

35 thoughts on “Politically Correct Nomenclature

  1. newepicauthor December 31, 2020 / 11:25 am

    The term master has often been paired with the word slave and because of this, it carries an historical racist undertone.

    Liked by 2 people

  2. relaxitsallwrite December 31, 2020 / 11:37 am

    I had a friend who’s cousin was involved in an episode of House Hunters International. They were not looking to buy internationally, not looking to buy at all, in fact. They were told exactly what to say and do. I used to love watching those shows until then. Not to be a debby downer. Still fun to watch, as long as it’s all taken with a grain of salt

    Liked by 2 people

    • bushboy December 31, 2020 / 4:44 pm

      I also heard that they have already bought a place. Yes, fun to watch

      Liked by 1 person

    • Fandango December 31, 2020 / 10:47 pm

      Yeah, I’ve read a couple of articles about how many of those shows are staged.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Marilyn Armstrong December 31, 2020 / 11:40 am

    Don’t worry. No one updated Alexa, so SHE still uses “Master bedroom.” If Alexa still uses it, it’s gotta be good, right?

    I think those changes may be a way to make the biggest bedroom seem somehow more important. All our bedrooms are so small, I find it amusing that our bedroom at 16X16 with a tiny powder room attached is “the master bedroom.” Not much of a master! Anything built before the mid 1970s — unless it was a mansion — had small bedrooms because they were easier to keep warm in winter.

    When we lived in Boston, our bedroom really WAS a suite. It occupied the entire top floor of the condo with a walk-in closet , full bath, and enough room to have a chair where you could sit and put on your socks along with the rest of the furniture — the ONLY house I’ve owned that had more room than could fit the big bed and the dressers — and it had two skylights which opened for more light. Otherwise, the “master bedroom was usually slightly larger than the next biggest bedroom and maybe had a sink and toilet attached. “Main” bedroom is probably overkill too. It was a really NICE three story condo and if (a) it had something other than electric heat (in New England???) and (b) wasn’t quite so vertical (there were a LOT of stairs!), we’d still be living there.

    I figure unless it has a dressing room or big walk-in closets AND an attached FULL bath, it’s ain’t any kind of master anything. But I speak from a house where the bedrooms seem to have been more or less forgotten until someone said “Oh, hey, don’t we want to put in bedrooms?”

    Liked by 1 person

    • Fandango December 31, 2020 / 10:54 pm

      I suppose almost all of the houses I’ve lived in have had a room that was designed as the “master bedroom,” which was the largest bedroom in the house and often had an attached bathroom. I just find it interesting that the term to describe what, ever since I can remember, had been called the master bedroom is now referred to as the main bedroom…at least on HGTV.


  4. larry trasciatti December 31, 2020 / 11:50 am

    The entitled ones will never stop rewriting both history, and even people’s everyday lives in general

    Liked by 1 person

    • Fandango December 31, 2020 / 11:02 pm

      Well, I’m not sure that calling a master bedroom a main bedroom rises to the level of what Charlton Heston was referring to in his speech, but I take your point. I may be left leaning, but I do think political correctness in this country has run amok.


    • Marleen January 2, 2021 / 2:21 pm

      Oh, for some god’s sake. Are you still play acting like Biden didn’t win the election? Playing into the grift that people should make money off that lie? From “billionaire” Trump to whoever this guy is (not Heston now but the one using Heston’s name) — cha-ching.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Marleen January 10, 2021 / 10:46 am

        Slipped in at the end, words that are not from Charlton Heston:

        Complaining to like-minded friends about fraud in the presidential elections, criticizing our governor in our homes but with no public protest: these may relieve some of our anxiety, but they do nothing to change our world for the better.

        Our silence and obedience makes us our own oppressors. …

        It is not the case that there was (and is) no public protesting (and worse) pertaining to COVID-19 or on the made up election fraud concepts.

        I’m not familiar with what Virginia did with regard to their governor, but I wouldn’t want to stoke the idea they should do what some malcontents in other states have done.

        And now we know what doing something contrarian about the frenzy as to the election, instead of being obedient, has led to (so far). These people are not making our world better.

        The far-right has their own political correctness. And it’s lethal.

        Liked by 1 person

        • Marleen January 10, 2021 / 1:42 pm

          This writer, by the name of Jeff, ended this way (and then advertised Parler):

          Our silence[*] and obedience makes us our own oppressors. It’s time to listen to Mr. Heston.

          Note from me (Marleen): *so-called (there wasn’t actually silence)

          Liked by 1 person

          • Marleen January 14, 2021 / 1:31 pm

            Quotation of Jeff Minick from linked article, beginning with Heston: “When Time magazine’s cover portrays millennium nuts as deranged, crazy Christians holding a cross as it did last month [January of 1999], boycott their magazine and the products it advertises.”

            The reason why Americans should offer this resistance, Heston explains, is “so that this nation may long endure.” Therefore, he urges his listeners “to follow in the hallowed footsteps of the great disobediences of history that freed exiles, founded religions, defeated tyrants, and yes, in the hands of an aroused rabble in arms and a few great men, by God’s grace, built this country.”

            Regarding political correctness and the future, Heston tells his audience, “Among other things, it means that telling us what to think has evolved into telling us what to say, so telling us what to do can’t be far behind.”

            We are living that future right now.

            🥺 {Notice, this version of “cancel culture” (the conservative kind) got flipped out. Donald Trump and people on Parler told people what to do after saying what they should think.

            Nevertheless, someone said, at 9:33 pm on January the 12 (two dates ago):
            Well, Parler ended because Amazon stopped hosting them and now they can’t find an alternate web host. So much for alternatives, alas. The cancel culture is just getting warmed up for 2021.}

            Liked by 1 person

  5. Alice DeForest December 31, 2020 / 12:02 pm

    That has been talked about for a long time. Years ago when I trained Real estate agents HUD put out a list of words and terms that are not acceptable, last I checked it was ok to use, but if it offends someone they can still file a complaint. Happy New Year

    Liked by 1 person

    • Fandango December 31, 2020 / 11:03 pm

      Happy new year to you too, Alice.


  6. Melanie B Cee December 31, 2020 / 12:06 pm

    Oh my goodness! Now I KNOW that the world has tipped into possibly irrevocable stupidity. I’ll continue to say “Master Bedroom” thanks. Even though no ‘master’ lives in my house. “Mistress Bedroom just sounds so suggestive! 😉

    Liked by 2 people

  7. ruddjr December 31, 2020 / 12:29 pm

    I remember watched an episode of “Masters of Flip” and Kortney wanted to have black and white tile in front of the vanities that spelled something. She and her design assistant actually had this conversation over the fact that they couldn’t use HIS AND HERS because it might be a single person buying it.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Hetty Eliot December 31, 2020 / 2:51 pm

      Let’s be fair though, it IS tacky regardless of the user’s relationship status.

      Liked by 1 person

    • Fandango December 31, 2020 / 11:07 pm

      Or maybe a “his and his” or a “hers and hers”!


    • Marleen January 15, 2021 / 10:48 am

      I wonder if they’ve changed the name of that show, or ended the show? But maybe that’s a use more like The Masters Tournament.

      Liked by 1 person

  8. Don't Forget the Half December 31, 2020 / 1:25 pm

    Real Estate Brokers have been phasing out that term for many years but it seems listing services are now jumping on the bandwago. I understand “master” to be the owner of the home but I can also understand the negative connotations behind the term. What I don’t agree with is anyone expressing this as a result of recent racist tension, which is the narrative I’ve read lately.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Fandango December 31, 2020 / 11:09 pm

      Someone else drew that connection and that interpretation never really occurred to me, but I guess I can understand it.

      Liked by 1 person

  9. Hetty Eliot December 31, 2020 / 2:52 pm

    What about the master copy (to photocopy something)? Is it offensive to the little photocopied clones?

    Liked by 2 people

  10. Sadje December 31, 2020 / 7:19 pm

    Haha! We never noticed these things in the “older” days. Now everything has to be pc

    Liked by 1 person

  11. jilldennison January 1, 2021 / 12:11 am

    Perhaps not so much sexist as racist? Think back to the days of plantations … slaves and masters? Nothing wrong with calling it the main bedroom. In our house, it’s called “Grannie’s room’! 😉

    Liked by 1 person

    • Fandango January 1, 2021 / 6:55 am

      A few people have mentioned that and I suppose, from my perspective as a white male, I never previously had given thought to the master-slave connotation. But yes, I can see how it might be considered racist as well as sexist.

      Liked by 1 person

      • jilldennison January 2, 2021 / 12:20 am

        Thank you for listening and thinking … far too many people don’t do that these days.

        Liked by 1 person

  12. Ian Kay January 1, 2021 / 1:21 am

    I don’t imagine in previous years it wouldn’t be known as a master bedroom even if the owners were black (or people of color). It’s more likely patriarchal. Interestingly in Britain, slavery was legally abolished by a parliamentary act in 1833. But it wasn’t until 1882 when an act was passed to allow married women to own property in their own right. Before this, the master of the house had full control, even over any property inherited from the woman’s side.

    Liked by 1 person

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.