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"Agency" as nomenclature

People use the word "agency" as if its meaning is understood, but I've never heard anybody talk like that outside of a feminist conversation. I don't see how it's useful except amongst those who agree and define their opinions by the fact that they are amongst those who agree.

The word is too academic, too exclusionary. It's one of those terms which for some people has such a clear definition that it has no depth of meaning; while other people just don't have any idea what it means. This leads to the troublesome fact that there are few people for whom "agency" really means anything.

That, in my opinion, is a piss-poor word.