Why We Curse
Last week the town of Middleborough voted to enforce a decades-old law that bans cursing in public spaces. Now if you swear in public in Middleborough, you could be fined twenty dollars. This decision was brought on by group of local teenagers who apparently hang out in town and say offensive stuff. Well, we thought this story begged a discussion about offensive language. Why are certain words profanities and others not? Why is it that certain words are OK for TV today, but ten years ago would have made most of us blush? We invited some wordsmiths on the show today to talk about language.
Peter Sokolowski, editor-at-large of Merriam-Webster
Timothy Jay, psychology professor at the Massachusetts College of Liberal Arts and author of Cursing in America and Why We Curse