The New Generation of Boys’ Names

Gender identity takes a turn for the middle

By Pamela Redmond

Many of today’s most fashionable boys’ names carry a gender identity that’s decidedly masculine but not conventionally so, softer than macho but stronger than unisex. These boys’ names fall right in the middle on the gender scale, in contrast to their stylish female counterparts, which tend to be ultra-feminine (Arabella, Ophelia) or frankly boyish (Hayden, Frankie).

Many of these hot new boys’ names carry sounds that are soft and/or traditionally connected to girls’ names, such as vowel endings, and so depart from the classic male names once dominant. These stylish boys’ names with a fresh gender identity include:

Isaiah and Isaac

Isaiah and Isaac are the only two popular boys’ names that start with the letter I, with the vowel beginning lending its traditional softness. Isaiah and Isaac also both have the sibilant s in the middle and Isaiah carries the final touch of a vowel ending. These two Old Testament I names are both in the Top 100.

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