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Clarissa's Blog

An academic's opinions on feminism, politics, literature, philosophy, teaching, academia, and a lot more.

Cultural Swearing

There are cultures whose swear words have to do with sex (fuck you, motherfucker, screw that, etc.).

There are cultures whose swear words relate to religion (hostia, tabarnak, en crisse, etc.).

There are cultures whose swear words are scatological (ass, shit, etc.).

Of course, all cultures have swear words in several areas but there is always a clear majority.

I’m not truly Ukrainian because the scatological theme does nothing for me. When I hear the convoluted and inventive Ukrainian swearing with the clearly scatological theme, I feel lost. I’m very obviously part of the Russian-speaker culture whose swearing is very genital.

To find out who you really are culturally, drop a heavy object on your foot and take note of what you scream out about.

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19 thoughts on “Cultural Swearing

  1. raddledoldtart on said:

    Fuckity arse cunt biscuits, here from Scotland, awaiting other responses with considerable interest 😀

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  2. There’s also animal swearing, very strong at one time (maybe still) in German and Dutch.

    IINM religious swearing tends to occur in places with strong government-religious institution ties. I’ve heard that blasphemy is very popular in Iran now.

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  3. ****** scatological definitely! it’s also what you’d say just before crashing into the car in front which stopped too suddenly…

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  4. I just go for one of the three American classics (F! motherF! or Fin’SHT!) if I drop someting on my toe, if I’m in a fine state of rage then I get more creative but I’m concerned about writing the full versions for fear of what traffic it might bring to you….

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  5. Hmm… If it’s cursing at my mistake or something disappointing, then scatological. If whatever is going wrong is ongoing or I just want to make something more extreme or it’s a person, then sexual. If it’s exasperation at the state of the world, then blasphemy. I think I just curse a lot! But based on the above list, and the fact that I am known for inappropriately dropping “F-bombs” a lot, perhaps I am in the sexual category. Given Americans puritanical culture, I think this makes sense…

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  6. Dreidel on said:

    “Ass” isn’t a scatological swear word (at least in American English). It’s an insult calling someone a “jackass” (the animal) — thus implying that the person is stupid or silly.

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  7. I come from a country where the juiciest, most offensive swear words involve sex and close family members. There is ample referencing of mothers’, sisters’, grandmothers’, even aunts’ vulvae and vaginae. Religious and scatological adjectives are used for casual embellishment of drab everyday objects, but are not considered to have enough potency as swear words.

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  8. I’d say “FUCKIN’ SHIT!!!! GOD-DAMN SON-OF-A-BITCH MOTHER-FUCKIN’ ASS STUPID THING!!!! CAN’T IT WATCH WHERE THE FUCK IT’S GOING ALREADY??? JESUS FUCKIN’ CHRIST ALREADY!!!!!!”

    Now ….what does that say about me? What category do I fit into?
    Or am I an “all-in-one”, “multiple personality”????

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