Saturday, 28 June 2014

Does swearing weaken your point?

I would say that I am a polite, well spoken 16 year old who is only foulmouthed in the right company, or in an appropriate situation. I even have a personal struggle with the 'c' word. It makes me cringe every time I read or hear it. It leaves me feeling uncomfortable if I ever have the urge to use it. Every other cuss word fails to make me even bat an eyelid but I would say that, on the whole, I'm a relatively mild swearer.

In the company of friends I have a tendency to cuss when I get angry or passionate in conversation. The more passionate I become the more frequently the swear words leave my mouth. If I were to speak like that in more formal company then I suppose people may be a little shocked. I can't be the most pleasant nor articulate speaker to listen to when all barriers are down. However, without overdoing it swearing can often have comic value. It can be witty before becoming too crude. So when swearing is used in a calculated and thought out manner I believe it has worth. It can be powerful, it can be ballsy, it can make people laugh. If I read something that uses cuss words often it can make the piece more relatable. More accessible. Instead of standing as a potentially pretentious article a swear word or two can make it seem more like a conversation around the dinner table late at night.

This does not diminish its effect, late night conversations can be equally as meaningful as a carefully crafted piece of writing. Granted if every other word in each sentence is fairly offensive then you'll probably come across as a little angry. Unattainable even. You inevitably get a bad name if you continuously spurt out provocative language. But swearing mildly and occasionally is no indication of a less than sunny disposition. Using swear words to fit in with a certain style of writing, a particular genre, causes no harm. If I was to say the word... 'fucking' perhaps but then followed it up with 'perfidiousness' surely I am not stripping away from my intellect. If I swear does that mean I degrade my opinion? Does that make me a bit too feisty?

Whatever it does I would hope that anyone reading any of my work and happened to stumble across a few swear words would either dismiss it or appreciate it was incorporated specifically into the style of writing I intended to use. If somebody mistook it for being a vain attempt at feistiness and then went on to somehow find that offensive then I say, well, get a fucking grip.

Thursday, 12 June 2014

Sluts are old and boring.

It's become a common social norm that if a woman sleeps around she is consequently a slut, but if a man sleeps around he's a hero. I've been told that it's not sexist it's 'just the way it is' but here's why that is absolutely wrong.

Throughout history when every unmarried woman in every society was severely oppressed by a patriarchal society her dignity and status relied on her virtue as a maid. Were a woman to go to bed with a man out of wedlock her reputation would instantly be in tatters and should said man refuse to marry her it was highly unlikely any man ever would. Even if the woman had been raped it would still deem her unsuitable for any suitors that may come her way. However, the man's virginity was rarely ever questioned. I assume that many respectable gentlemen were honest about their sexual history and made marriage to their wives equal, but should they not be virgins before they married it would be unlikely for anyone to bat and eyelid. "Boys will be boys" I suppose they would have said. But a woman would be a slut, a whore, a harlot.

In our society there isn't so much destruction of a woman's dignity should she bed a man out of wedlock, no one even uses that word anymore, because we've gone through the sexual revolution. Right? Men and women in our Western society are able to sleep with whom they choose as long as both partners give consent and are of a legal age. Women are even allowed to admit they enjoy sex, contraceptives have liberated ladies everywhere. But there's a limit on the number of men a woman can sleep with, and the way in which she does it. A woman's number of sexual partners does not equate to a heroic feat but to disastrous consequences on her social status. There are plenty of names for women who aren't shy about who they take to bed, there are none for men who show equal promiscuity. Is the sexual revolution complete then? Or is a women's virtue still based on her sexual history whilst men can walk on by with as many partners as they want?

The new popularity for 'purity balls' in America are also quite staggeringly old fashioned. There is no alternative for a son to pledge his virginity to his mother until he marries, because his sex life is of no concern to anyone. It's the daughters who are monitored and disapproved of throughout their whole lives. They are not exposed to sexual freedom. Their sex lives are the property of their male superiors. Their father and then their husband. To me it seems like a very unfair deal.

I don't think women have been sexually liberated because every day there are obstacles to climb over when dealing with their own private sex history. For me I still see the archaic view of women's sexuality being judged and jeopardising their entire worth. It isn't just a case of 'that's the way it goes' it's a society treating the same manner differently for two genders. Which is inequality. 'Slut' is a sad word, a hurtful word because it's used in a derogatory manner specifically towards women. Until there is a male equivalent or until 'slut' is not used in a degrading way the sexual liberation of women is not complete. A woman's sex life is private, but an archaic element of our society seems to think it's everyone's business to judge. Slut shaming is without a doubt a very sexist issue. It needs to stop.