According to a new study swearing and cursing can be signs of superior intelligence. You might be saying – “You f***ing kidding me”, my parents have been calling these abusers as dorks, how can these slangs prove intelligence!! Well read on, and you’ll be surprised.
Are you someone who thinks cursing is a bad habit? Or are you one of those people who think that other people, who swear a lot, are dumb?
Well, you are wrong here.
A recent study suggests quite the opposite. These people who curse and swear a lot might actually be very smart people. They can be the masters of the language and they basically understand every little nuance of what the language that they are speaking.
It is pertinent to make it clear from the get go that we are not talking about some sociopath who goes all crazy cursing and abusing people without any regard for others. Nor are we talking about the general abusers, who more often than not are dumb witted. Here we are talking about people who exhibit finesse even in their swearing and cursing, who know exactly what word they must use and when they should use it.
Cursing represents perhaps the most alluring correlation among intelligence and language.
Have you ever heard the name, George Carlin? He was a famous comedian who once said, “There are 400,000 words in the English Language, and there are 7 of them that you can’t say on television.
What a ratio that is!” He was infamous for being rude, crude, vile, vulgar, and lewd, and thus many critics didn’t praise him. But even those critics also agreed that he was an absolute master of language and was glib with his words. He swore a lot but was indubitably a comedic genius.
Earlier, there was a myth that people who swear a lot are dumb or foolish. It was thought that these people are not able to formulate meaningful sentences and thus end up swearing a lot.
They were looked down upon and not just in America but in almost every culture as well. They were treated as outcasts and as people who are not fit to live within the society.
But according to latest studies, this myth of relating taboo words with low intellect is completely baseless.
Through their research, psychologists from Massachusetts College of Liberal Arts were able to debunk this myth. In the study, they hypothesized that there exists no correlation between swearing and intellect.
This study was then published in the journal of “Language Sciences” and it effectively got rid of the popular myth that linked cursing with poor intellect. The conclusion made by the scientists was,
“A voluminous taboo lexicon may better be considered an indicator of healthy verbal abilities rather than a cover for their deficiencies. People who use taboo words understand their general expressive content as well as nuanced distinctions that must be drawn to use slurs appropriately. The ability to make nuanced distinctions indicates the presence of more rather than less linguistic knowledge, as implied by the POV or poverty of vocabulary view.”
They supplemented their conclusion with three main observations, these can be summarized as follows:
- The habit of cursing or we may call it ‘taboo fluency is directly correlated with neuroticism and openness.
- People who use this taboo language often possess a unique, rare talent of self-expression.
- It may sound a little weird to you but, advanced practice and knowledge of these words show the presence of vast verbal knowledge.
The points of this study must have surely challenged your existing belief by now. With further explanation, we will try to solidify this idea in your head.
So, this research points towards the idea that taboo words, just like any other words, are part of a language. And as linguists claim and science proves; the command over more number of words helps you to understand more concepts and thus shows that you have a higher intellect.
Now, as these words are also just a part of a language, thus they should be seen as representing a set of ideas. So when you use them, and with great care and delicacy, it shows that you have intricate knowledge of what you are saying.
It is also important to understand that most of the words in the taboo language are slangs, slurs, or replete with hidden meanings.
Using these requires a great deal of understanding the nuances of each of these words. Thus, if you demonstrate your ability to speak these words with finesse, then it will surely represent superior intelligence.
The famous Linguist, Norman Lewis, says that the fact that every single word in the English language is representative of a completely different idea, the more words you know, the more ideas you have. In the case of slangs though, we tend not to associate them with a particular idea, but these words help you to represent the darker sides of our lives which generally we tend to ignore.
One very important point that can be concluded from the research is that a person who curses or swears a lot is not unintelligent or dumb like your elders might have you believe.
But actually, they might be much more smart and sophisticated than what your elders think! In this digital age where everything that strikes the youth becomes a trend, it is very important not to ignore the growing trend of using these taboo words.
The Internet provides that free space for expression that our society still starves for. Thus, these trends catch fire and youth find an excellent opportunity to express themselves in whichever way they want.
The onus is now on you and me to understand that these slangs mean much more than mere taboo words and thus we must not judge the other person based on the kind of words he/she is using. After all, every word is just a sound until it is ascribed a meaning.
What do you think about taboo language! Share your views with us.
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