Steven Pinker on the language and neuroscience of swearing

I don’t like swearing—I fucking love it. All five fucking fine flavours of it (Jesus Christ, how could I not? It’s the shit—even when I fucking descend into the fucking use of the fucking fuck patois Pinker mentions, and others might feel that obscenities and blasphemy are cancers in my vocabluary—but screw those retards!).

No, seriously, dysphemisms and their power are a universal in human societies, and no matter what particular words might be used for swearing in society the swear words themselves fall into five categories. The use of swear words taps directly into the emotional centres of our brains, and thus, as a general rule, alerts us to strong feelings about things. Anyways, the two videos below comprise a great look at why and how we swear.

The Language of Swearing, Part 1

The Language of Swearing, Part 2

About John MacKenzie

I'll mumble for ya. Poetry, plus most things quantifiable: science, neuroscience, memory, epistemology, baseball. And so on.
This entry was posted in Consciousness, Language, Neuroscience, Things to think about and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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