SWEARING IS GOOD FOR YOU.

Author:Boehm, Eric
Position:BOOK - Emily Byrne's "Swearing Is Good For You: The Amazing Science of Bad Language" - Brief article - Book review
 
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It just feels really good to say "fuck!" Everyone's favorite four-letter word can be an expression of anger, frustration, or celebration. Cursing isn't actually crude at all--it's a complex mix of social signals, emotional expression, and cultural significance, argues Emily Byrne in her new book Swearing Is Good For You: The Amazing Science of Bad Language.

Our love of dirty words is part nurture--shared vulgarities build social cohesion, she posits, whether in an office or a stadium--and part nature. Unlike other aspects of language, swearing triggers a reaction in the subcortex, a more primitive part of the brain that's also responsible for emotions and bodily functions. That connection explains why...

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