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Linguistics Question: Referring To 'Mister Chair' or 'Madam Chair' for a professor..

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  • Sep 11th, 2012 12:03 pm
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[OP]
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May 29, 2009
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Linguistics Question: Referring To 'Mister Chair' or 'Madam Chair' for a professor..

Wondering if a linguistics expert can chime in. In a setting where one refers to a chairperson, it's usually 'Mister Chair' and 'Madam Chair'. What if the Chairperson has a PhD or is a professor, where usually instead of saying Mr. Jones, you say Dr. Jones or Prof. Jones -- is it 'Doctor Chair'? Thanks!
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Jul 30, 2005
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(I certainly talk enough, so that makes me an expert, right? ;) )

You don't address them as "doctor" or "professor" because you're formally addressing the position/office occupied by that person, but not the actual person occupying that position. Make sense?
[OP]
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May 29, 2009
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Ahh fair enough, but so it's okay to use Mister Chair? I mean Madam is not the same as Ms. or Mrs., but Mister Chair sounds a lot like Mr. Chair..
[OP]
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May 29, 2009
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Sounds good. Thanks! Just wanted to make sure "Mister Chairman" doesn't get misinterpreted as "Mr."...
Moderator
May 28, 2012
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msqrade wrote:
Sep 11th, 2012 12:00 pm
Sounds good. Thanks! Just wanted to make sure "Mister Chairman" doesn't get misinterpreted as "Mr."...
Chairman is a common enough term, like Bus Driver...it isn't going to be mistaken for a surname.

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