In recent years, the emergence of the gender-neutral ethnic label Latinx has been adopted by a substantial amount of news outlets, corporations, academic institutions, and governments in the U.S. But the term remains unpopular among the American population.
According to Pew Research Center, only one-in-four Hispanics in the U.S. have across the term, while only 3 percent have used it to describe themselves.
“The emergence of Latinx coincides with a global movement to introduce gender-neutral nouns and pronouns into many languages whose grammar has traditionally used male or female constructions,” a Pew Research report states. “In the United States, the first uses of Latinx appeared more than a decade ago.”
“Yet the use of Latinx is not common practice, and the term’s emergence has generated debate about its appropriateness in a gendered language like Spanish.”
In the survey, it was found that young Hispanics, between the ages of 18 and 29, were the most likely of all age groups to have heard of the term Latinx.
“Young Hispanics, ages 18 to 29, are among the most likely to have heard of the term – 42% say they have heard of it, compared with 7% of those ages 65 or older,” the report states.
Hispanics with higher educational attainment are also more likely to be aware of the term compared to people with non-college experience. Additionally, people born in the U.S. are more likely to have come across the term compared to foreigners.
“Hispanics who identify with or lean toward the Democratic Party are more likely to have heard of Latinx than those who identify with or lean toward the Republican Party (29% vs. 16%),” the survey also found.
Moreover, the term Latinx has been on the steady increase in online popularity since 2016, according to recent numbers released by Pew Research Center.
“The relative popularity of Latinx in online searches in the U.S. has increased since 2016, according to a Pew Research Center analysis of Google Trends data,” the survey’s co-authors explained. “While its earliest Google searches extend back to the early 2000s, the highest monthly relative number of searches for Latinx occurred in June 2020, surpassing a previous peak in October 2019.”