Forbidden Words: Taboo and the Censoring of Language (Google eBook)

Front Cover
Cambridge University Press, Oct 5, 2006 - Language Arts & Disciplines - 303 pages
3 Reviews
Many words and expressions are viewed as 'taboo', such as those used to describe sex, our bodies and their functions, and those used to insult other people. This 2006 book provides a fascinating insight into taboo language and its role in everyday life. It looks at the ways we use language to be polite or impolite, politically correct or offensive, depending on whether we are 'sweet-talking', 'straight-talking' or being deliberately rude. Using a range of colourful examples, it shows how we use language playfully and figuratively in order to swear, to insult, and also to be politically correct, and what our motivations are for doing so. It goes on to examine the differences between institutionalized censorship and the ways individuals censor their own language. Lively and revealing, Forbidden Words will fascinate anyone who is interested in how and why we use and avoid taboos in daily conversation.
  

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LibraryThing Review

User Review  - heina - LibraryThing

This book manages to make the technicalities of language both interesting and accessible to those not trained in linguistics (like me). I quote it in daily conversation not infrequently. Read full review

Review: Forbidden Words: Taboo and the Censoring of Language

User Review  - Cody - Goodreads

laffin @ the old man review below this one ranting and raving about some stupid shit about pavement (not the band although that would be funny too). my main beef is that it's almost entirely ... Read full review

Contents

1 Taboos and their origins
1
2 Sweet talking and offensive language
29
3 Bad language? Jargon slang swearing and insult
55
4 The language of political correctness
90
Figure 41 Darkie Toothpaste becomes Darlie Toothpaste
103
5 Linguistic purism and verbal hygiene
112
6 Taboo naming and addressing
125
7 Sex and bodily effluvia
144
8 Food and smell
175
9 Disease death and killing
203
Figure 91 Squatters dispersing Australian Aborigines late nineteenth
231
10 Taboo censoring and the human brain
237

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About the author (2006)

Keith Allan is Reader in Linguistics and Convenor of the Linguistics Program at Monash University.

Kate Burridge is Chair of Linguistics at Monash University.

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