Category: Celebrity Names
by Pamela Redmond Satran
Now that Prince Harry and Meghan Markle are officially the Duke and Duchess of Sussex, the next big even we can look forward to is a royal baby — and a royal baby name.
The name possibilities for Harry and Meghan’s theoretical children are wider and more wonderful than they’ve been for big brother William and Kate. As Prince Andrew and Sarah Ferguson did when they named their daughters Beatrice and Eugenie, Harry and Meghan can choose from a more expansive lexicon of royal names. And as evidenced in their wedding, Meghan is likely to assert her American heritage and personal beliefs in the baby’s name.
Here are our 10 ideas for what the royals might name their firstborn:
This week’s news celebrates names that step outside the ordinary, from the worlds of hip-hop, college sports, and Spanish grandmothers.
Kulture and counter-culture
Maybe it’s the Cardi B effect. Last week the rapper and her husband Offset announced the birth of their daughter, Kulture Kiari. It’s a bold, possibly unique choice that reflects her father’s name and her parents’ values. Not surprisingly, the world had things to say about it.
This article is a welcome relief from the usual roll call of “crazy” celebrity baby names (which often turn out to be not actually that crazy). It’s a proud celebration of “extra juicy” names, not just because they made a change from the ones Boring Normals use, but because they challenge a dominant culture that has long belittled names that were out of the ordinary:
“As if language isn’t fluid! As if the tongue weren’t meant to always be learning! And what’s the result of it? Misplaced shaming and generations of missed opportunities.”
Now there’s encouragement to anyone thinking of naming outside the box.
Another defense of Cardi B’s baby name agrees that Kulture’s name shows her parents’ vibrancy and creativity. It’s not bestowed just for the sake of being a zany celebrity, but shows the pride they take in their, well, culture. And, as Cardi B said on her social media, “Anything else woulda been basic.”
Where do your naming tastes lie? Are you basic and proud, do you like names that blow your mind – or somewhere in between?
(And just for fun, since we’re talking about rappers: are you saying these rappers’ names correctly?)
by Sophie Kihm
Names are very revealing. They carry demographic information—names often give clues as to one’s approximate age, race, nationality, and gender. However, our names say more about our parents than they do about us. A child’s name can tell you a lot about his or her parents’ values.
For example, Jason Aldean and Brittany Kerr named their oldest son Memphis Aldean Williams. Memphis indicates their deep ties to the South—both as the birthplace of country music and of Jason and Brittany. And Aldean, the middle name baby Memphis shares with his father, tell us the couple values family, heritage, and tradition.
Brittany is now pregnant with their second child, and I wonder if the same values will come across in this baby’s name, or if new ones will be revealed. Likewise, what will we learn about the stars who have never named children before? Will Pippa Middleton use a family name for her baby, or choose something unexpected? Will Kate Upton go the typical supermodel route and pick a daring, bold baby name, or stick closer to her Midwestern roots with a safer, subdued choice? I’ve made my predictions below, but only time will tell.
This week’s news includes a girl junior, a boy named after a comic-book villain, and international names from France, Denmark and beyond.
In a show where many of the characters’ names are familiar and somewhat dated (Rick, Shane, Lori, Carol), Negan stands out. But not necessarily in a good way. He’s a pretty nasty character with a pretty nasty baseball bat.
The comic’s creator, Robert Kirkman, has said he picked the name Negan because it sounded negative. There’s no denying it also sounds namelike: it’s only one letter away from Megan and Regan, and you’ll find it at the end of Finnegan.
Dad wants to make it clear that little Negan is named after the character in the comic book, not the TV show it inspired. If you’re familiar with the comic, tell us: does that make the association any better?
By Owen Satran
Rappers have typically chosen names for their children that emphasize their power and individuality in direct, ostentatious ways. Many rap baby names suggest a new generation of deities and royalty: Beyonce and Jay-Z chose Sir, Kanye and Kim Kardashian chose Saint, Lil’ Kim chose Royal Reign, T.I. chose King and Messiah, Nas chose Knight. So when it was announced this morning that rappers Cardi B and Offset chose the name Kulture Kiari Cephus for their new baby girl, it set a new direction.
Kulture is, of course, a truly unique choice, given to no babies on the most recent Social Security list. But the baby’s name references her parents’ originality and individuality. Daddy Offset, who chose the name, is a member of the rap group Migos, whose last two albums were titled Culture and Culture II. Offset’s birth name is Kiari Kendrell Cephus, while Cardi B’s is Belcalis Marlenis Almanazar. Cardi is short for Bacardi, the rapper’s childhood nickname, a play on her sister’s first name Hennessy, as in the cognac.