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May 10th, 2013 04:03 PM #56
I find this thread confusing. Honestly, where are these people naming their children names for no other reason than to sound educated, or better educated than they actually are? I've never met someone with a literary name who didn't have a lovely story passed down from their parents as to why they chose that name. It sounds to me like a person assuming the parents of an Atticus are pretentious are snobs themselves. "Oh, a book you read in middle school? Color me impressed. Why didn't you pick a more obscure/common name/book/character? Then you'd impress me." The usual snobby, hipster silliness.
Obviously if they name their child a name from a piece of literature they've either never read or didn't love to pieces for no other reason than to sound important it's pretentious. Obviously! But I've never met anyone who did this.
While I'm slightly bothered (more for my future children's sake) that people are going to read or hear my children's names and think, "What a pretentious woman," the bigger part of me doesn't give a hoot. Someone hearing or reading my children's names has no idea why I chose the name. I know, and my children will know.
It's no different than the snobbery for any other name. "Another Sophia? Yawn." What I hear? Another judgmental snob who thinks they could have done a better job. You have no idea why they chose that name. Ask them! Unless you are having a conversation about the name and it comes up that there's no story behind Atticus, you are an utter snob if your first thought is "boring" or "pretentious".
Having an opinion is a lovely thing. But ask yourself where this opinion (especially if it's an opinion of judgement) is coming from. In my experience, they come from insecurities deep within ourselves and those are good things to be open with ourselves about so we can be a better person. We're all a work in progress.Considering...
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May 10th, 2013 04:10 PM #58
May 10th, 2013 04:31 PM #60Senior Member
- Join Date
- Nov 2011
I wouldn't use an overt literary name because of that factor! I love books & love a lot of literary names but I feel like for me it would be too cheesy especially because I am known amongst my friends & family as being a "reader"! I think a super subtle nod is better than something like Salinger. But it's a personal choice and if someone named their kid Holden cause it was the book that got them interested in reading I guess that's a nice story behind a name!
May 10th, 2013 04:37 PM #62Senior Member
- Join Date
- Nov 2011
As for the pretentious side of it...I do think that 20 years from now the name Atticus might get a little judgement the way a name like Neveah might. Sophia might feel like a bore but it's a lot less loaded in that way.
I think there's something to be said for considering this when picking a name. "Does the name sound down-to-earth?" is as valid a question as "Is the name spelled correctly?" or "Does the name sound 'trashy'?"
May 10th, 2013 08:30 PM #64
For me, it mostly has to do with how well known the name is and how direct the association is.
I don't really think it's pretentious to use any name, but there are definitely names who's only association is one specific famous person. I wouldn't personally want to bear the name of a person like that, famous or infamous, because I feel like the beginning of every relationship would consist of explaining the connection. I want to be myself and not somebody else.
So names like Cher, Plato, Madonna, Socrates, Elvis, Michaelangelo, Galileo, etc. I would not consider usable for that reason.
Then of course there is a huge gray area, how famous or direct does the association have to be before it becomes burdensome to a kid? That's the real argument IMO.
I think Atticus is a bit heavy for our current day, but other than that I think it's a fine name.
Scout is cute, but sounds like a dog's name to me so I wouldn't consider it.
Tennyson is actually kinda cute! Tenny is adorable!
Keats isn't really a pleasant sound to me. I'd probably use Keaton instead.
Auden sounds like odd-one.
Harper isn't a good association for me as it makes me think of harping on something over and over.
Ray is just boring and dated imo.
Bradbury is sorta interesting, but I wouldn't want the word "bury" in my name.
Salinger isn't a pleasant sound to me--"injure"
I have a lot of names I'd consider for a similar reason: Calvin, Wesley, Luther, Piper, Corinthia, TheophilusOlivia/Livia/Livy/Liv : Thessaly/Darah/Bethel : Noelle/Eve
Benedict/Eli: Jude/Zane: Luke/Darius : Levi/Phineas/Calvin