Dictionary .com’s word of the year is ‘woman’ – and yes, it includes trans women

A woman stands with her back to the camera, wearing a trans flag while the dictionary definiton of the word woman is next to her.

Dictionary.com has announced its word of the year is “Woman” – and yes, that’s all women.

The organisation declared its choice in a Monday (13 December) statement in which it explained search queries for the word spiked by 1,417 per cent.

“It’s one of the oldest words in the English language. One that’s fundamental not just to our vocabulary, but to who we are as a humans,” the statement read.

“And yet it’s a word that continues to be a source of intense personal importance and societal debate.”

Dictionary.com defines woman as an “adult female person” which emphasised includes every woman, cisgender or otherwise.

“The word belongs to each and every woman — however they define themselves,” it added.

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According to the site, the biggest search spike occurred in March, which it attributed to a confirmation hearing in which a senator asked judge Ketanji Brown Jackson to define the word.

The Supreme Court nominee graciously shut down the question – which is often used as a dogwhistle for anti-trans sentiments – saying: “No, I can’t… I’m not a biologist.”

“It was a rare case of not just a word in the spotlight, but a definition,” the statement read.

“We at Dictionary.com weren’t the only ones to take notice.”

Lia Thomas waits on the side of a swimming pool, neck deep, after having swam in a race.
Dictionary.com also cited Lia Thomas’ participation in sports as a reason for including the word. (Getty)

It also attributed the decision to the overturning of Roe v. Wade in America, which effectively nullified the nationwide rights to abortion for women and those who have a uterus.

The decision by the US Supreme Court has been met with overwhelming protests by feminists and LGBTQ+ activists, while also resulting in several misogynistic bills being proposed in the country.

Other events that were considered in the word’s selection involved the death of Queen Elizabeth II, the unjust death of Mahsa Amini while in custody by Iranian “morality” police, and the vitriolic anti-trans backlash to trans women in sports.

“The utter variety of all these events is a reminder that one word can never sufficiently summarise or encapsulate an entire year, especially a year as relentlessly eventful, inflammatory, and inflationary as 2022,” its statement continued.

“Nevertheless, 2022 will be remembered in part for its impact on women, and for women’s impact on a changing world.”

And yes, that involves all women.