Monday, May 16, 2016

What's in a Name: a Lincoln or a Bentley?

I'm happy to see that my 2012 analysis of popular baby names holds up for the most recent list of popular names for Minnesota babies. But this time I noticed a new trend among the boys' names. Maybe it was there a few years ago and I missed it, but here goes.

Among the many nouveau names for boys, there's a clear focus on names that sound like they belong to fictional millionaires:

  • Easton
  • Grayson (and its variant, Greyson)
  • Brantley
  • Brooks
  • Beckett
  • Lincoln
  • Bentley
  • Crosby

They bubble up from the list like faux champagne among the cheap beer of the Rykers, Jases and Jaxons. While they're not invented like those names, these adapted last names or names of luxury products are not exactly kitsch-free, either.

It's hard not to think this trend indicates something about parents' unease with their little boys' future economic prospects.

1 comment:

Gina said...

As a writer of fiction, I'm also fascinated by names and what kind of impression a name came make on other people (or readers). In novels, names can also have symbolic significance, if the author so wishes. I cannot say that I'd name any male fictional characters any of the names on the list, at least not for first names. Last names are a possibility, though. Same goes for girls' names.