Why do people Swear

March 29, 2010 at 4:27 pm | Posted in Lifescape | Leave a comment
clipped from news.discovery.com

Why Do People Swear?

When the Vice President dropped the f-bomb this week, he sparked a flurry of controversy, but researchers point out cussing has been around for centuries.

Joe Biden, Barack Obama

This week’s historic health-care vote evoked strong reactions, including
from the vice president of the United States. “This is a big f-ing deal,” Joe Biden whispered to Barack Obama, as the men shook hands in front of a cheering crowd and an open mic.

Biden’s remark was intended for Obama’s ears only, but that nearby microphone broadcast his profanity to the world. Now, as blogs buzz about whether the comment was inappropriate or uncivil, language experts say that the slip is simply another example of how normal it is to swear in everyday speech.

In fact, while the specific words we consider vulgar have changed over time, curse words have been around for hundreds of years, maybe more. Words like the f-bomb are powerful because they do a particularly good job of expressing strong feelings.

A History of the F-bomb

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