“Well, that fuckin’ fucker’s fucked.”

January 21, 2011

The greatest crime is not profanity per se (see Christian Bale below)  but it is the unimaginative use of any word.

I much prefer profanity than the intention degradation that occurs in franchising in terms such as “sharing”, “family” and “owning a business”. Orwell said that degrading language is the only way to make totalitarianism permanent and unshakable.

Northrop Frye on profanity:

Obscenity in language is an ornament except when it becomes routine, & in the latter event it approaches mere idiocy.  The most horrid example of passivity & inertia of mind I know is Woodside’s story of the soldier who gazed into a shell hole at the bottom of which a dead mule was lying, and said: “Well, that fuckin’ fucker’s fucked.”

(What sort of person is it, incidentally, whose feelings would be spared by printing the above as “that ____in’ _____er’s ____ed,” or “that obscene obscenity’s obscenitied”?) (Collected Works, 8, 10)

[An Educated Imagination]

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