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Author Topic: Aesthetic Vulgarity?  (Read 3395 times)

Darkmere

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Re: Aesthetic Vulgarity?
« Reply #15 on: November 29, 2013, 04:33:25 am »

Do you get it now?

I don't know. Could you phrase it in a less demeaningly strawman way? I don't understand why my admission of not grasping "taboo" language made me a target for your spite.

FAKEEDIT: scrdest basically summed it up. Language is more than denotation, trying to simplify it to such accomplishes nothing.
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And then, they will be weaponized. Like everything in this game, from kittens to babies, everything is a potential device of murder.
So if baseless speculation is all we have, we might as well treat it like fact.

scrdest

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Re: Aesthetic Vulgarity?
« Reply #16 on: November 29, 2013, 04:45:41 am »


I don't know. Could you phrase it in a less demeaningly strawman way? I don't understand why my admission of not grasping "taboo" language made me a target for your spite.

Oh, right, LB, would you kindly [sexual reference] stop [sexual reference] acting like [scatological reference] [sexual reference] you are [sexual  reference] superior?

If you want to discuss, follow the [scatological reference] rules of discussion.
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We are doomed. It's just that whatever is going to kill us all just happens to be, from a scientific standpoint, pretty frickin' awesome.

Max White

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Re: Aesthetic Vulgarity?
« Reply #17 on: November 29, 2013, 04:53:50 am »

Do you get it now?
Yea, pretty easy to understand where you are coming from.
But don't make the fallacy of thinking that understanding your argument is the same as agreeing with it... If you lack the ability to deal with the idea that language is more complex and dynamic than a list of words that is your problem.

XXSockXX

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Re: Aesthetic Vulgarity?
« Reply #18 on: November 29, 2013, 04:59:28 am »

In the case of people who habitually swear, their way of thinking...in my observation...is fundamentally different from the thinking of people who don't. Swearing generally involves a great deal of vagueness, and the people who swear, I think, think less clearly than people who don't.

I think what you describe is a subset of people, whose vocabulary (and possibly thinking) is too limited to express themselves in a precise manner. They also probably use lots of non-expletive filler words like, you know, "like", right, and are kinda unable to, like, sort of stop doing so or something, I dunno.

There are many ways to be creative with vulgarity however. If you're aware of what you're saying and how you are saying it, it can be quite powerful and expressive. Using vulgarity can add meaning and emotional weight that is understood in context, it's "verbal body language" like someone said above. It doesn't always translate well in written language, but if someone yells "Fuck!" you almost always get what they mean. Being too precise in verbal language on the other hand will make you sound cold and robotic.

The problem is people being unable to turn their vulgarity off depending on the situation, which intelligent people should be able to do. It's what linguists call "code switching", same thing as with dialects and youth languages vs standard language or academic language, if you're unable to switch in the right context, you're essentially limited to communicating with people who accept your language as socially normal.

Vulgarity and seemingly meaningless "What's up, bro!"-style conversations can have a function of social bonding, that is limited to certain social groups or contexts. Outside of the group it will make you look stupid or weird, the same way using overtly formal language can make you look arrogant in certain contexts. Every language variety has it's place and function. Key is to know when to switch to what in the right situation. That requires a certain amount of verbal and social intelligence that has to be learned and that simply not everybody possess.
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frostshotgg

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Re: Aesthetic Vulgarity?
« Reply #19 on: November 29, 2013, 05:00:07 am »

I was going to write a long drawn out post critiquing LB's logic full out sentence by sentence, but then A, I got lazy, and B, I realized that I can sum up the entirety of the problem with three sentences.

1. Words can have multiple meanings that have some overlap, and multiple words can mean the same thing, excepting connotations.
2. Context for a word, phrase, or sentence matters.
3. Conversation is not equivalent to prose.

1: Every single word, every single definition of every single word means something different to everybody. The entire body of one's life changes how they understand various words and how they use them, but despite this fluid meaning overall, at any give usage one has a definite meaning by their word choice.

2: You can't just take something out of context and expect to get the full meaning.
Quote
"Fuck you"
alone means little other than distaste to some degree.
Quote
"Fuck you, I trusted you"
shows hatred because of some betrayal.
Quote
"Hey, long time no see"
"Fuck you, man. I thought you were dead"
It's lightly berating to tell speaker A not to do that again.
Context matters, you can't take that out and then expect full clarity.

3. When people speak aloud, everything is off the cuff and as it comes to mind. It's also usually accompanied by body language as well as other non-verbal information. You can't expect everything that comes out of people's mouths to be a fucking literary masterwork. See that there? That fucking was used as a modifier to place emphasis. It had no other meaning. Yet by LB's expectations as I understand them, it must CLEARLY indicate that the literary masterwork is ACTUALLY having intercourse, which is obviously not true.

So to go back to the conversation that started this whole discussion:
Quote
"Hey, bro."
"Buddy!"
"Sup, man?"
"Fuckin' keeping it real, you know?"
"Dude, you're the man!"
"Shit, I know, right?"
"Bro, you know it man!"
"Later, buddy."
"Take it easy bro."
LB's takeaway: Hi, bye.

Applying rule 1: Not much can be gained, but it is understood that to them all of their words mean something as opposed to nothing but hi, bye.

Applying rule 2: The first two lines obviously are greetings, but the third one is inquiring about the other's health. Then B says something extremely colloquial, which urban dictionary helpfully defines as: Staying true to yourself, your faith, your life and constantly seeking the truth. In that, "Fuckin'" serves to emphasize that he is doing what he loves. "You know?" is rhetorical, and is inquiring whether or not A understands him. Then A acknowledges he understood, and that he envies B and compliments A on his enjoyment of life. Then B interjects (IN-TERJECTIONS, FOR EXCITEMENT, AND EMOTION!) with "shit" for the sake of expressing that he like the situation. In that situation, "shit" really has no meaning at all. It's purely an interjection to show obviously positive emotion. Despite me completely understanding the meaning of it, I have no way to express my understanding. It's some combination of joy and appreciation. B was able to convey this combination, which admittedly is probably slightly different for him, with one word, and wait for it... A shows that he understood completely through some combination of that interjection and body language immediately. Then it's just them saying goodbye.

Applying rule 3: This really just explains the horrible sentence phrasing/questionable definitions. They understood what each other mean, and that's really all that matters. They don't care to make their conversation understandable to others.

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alexandertnt

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Re: Aesthetic Vulgarity?
« Reply #20 on: November 29, 2013, 05:45:19 am »

I have never observed this phenomina where people who swear alot convey less useful information than those who don't. As a programmer, most the people I speak to (regardless of wheather they swear alot or not) seem to speak redundantly and inconsistantly, I have noticed no correlation with swearing, i.e. the people who drop swearing into their everyday conversation give me about as much useful information as those who don't.

Quote
If someone says "fuck you," try asking them what exactly they mean. Anger side,they'll probably have a difficult time describing exactly what they mean

The meaning of swearing is highly dependant on the situation it is used in (along with most of the trainwreck that is the english language). On its own, this is useless. But if you notice they have a nail jammed into their hands, suddenly you understand exactly what they mean.

Quote
For example, if somebody says "Oh my god! What the fuck?" How do you express that idea without the swearing? Go ahead, try it. Not so easy, it is?

Given an actual situation, it becomes quite easy. If you shove someone and they said "Oh my god! What the fuck?", they could have easily just stated "that startled me and I did not like it. I am now somewhat angry that you pushed me and would like to know why". Simple.

This leads me to suspect that its not swearing that leads to vague/less-informative statements, its possibly your inability to interpret the meaning of swear words in a given situation that leads to what are interpreted as vague statements.

Quote
Ask some people who swear constantly to translate themselves without swearing and get back to me. I've done it, and I've seen them stumble at expressions like "What the..." and look around bewildered trying to think of what to say next. And then come up with something like "What the fudge?"

Don't you think asking an unusual request like this (and it is quite an unusual request) and recording their immediate responses is a but unfair? I, and most other people, would probably respond the same way in the same situation.

At least, I am assuming those responses where the immidiate response, unless they literally came up to you some time later and said "What the *pause*".


FAKEEDIT: frostshotgg probably did a better job of explaining the significance of context.
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This is when I imagine the hilarity which may happen if certain things are glichy. Such as targeting your own body parts to eat.

You eat your own head
YOU HAVE BEEN STRUCK DOWN!

LordBucket

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Re: Aesthetic Vulgarity?
« Reply #21 on: November 29, 2013, 05:55:22 am »

I don't know. Could you phrase it in a less demeaningly strawman way?

Not sure that I can. I was being literal. I don't even know what you're suggesting is a strawman. Let's try it this way: If instead of "I love cats" I say "I testicles love cats," does that sound odd to you? Does "testicles" seem like a peculiar word to add to the sentence "I like cats?" Does it seem to you that it doesn't particularly add anything good to the sentence?

If so, then the reason is probably that when you hear the word "testicles" you think of...testicles. Right? So now...instead "I love cats" what if I say "I fucking love cats." See, now, to your ears, you hear me saying "I love cats...a whole lot!" But what I hear is..."I fucking love cats." As in fucking. Because just like the word "testicles" means "testicles" to you, the word "fucking" means "fucking to me.

Does that make sense?




LB, you are trying to do a one-word substitution here, and it simply doesn't work.

And yet it worked perfectly well for all the examples I gave without swearing. Why is that?

Quote
Do you realize how this sentence makes you sound?

No.



would you kindly [sexual reference] stop [sexual reference] acting like [scatological reference]
[sexual reference] you are [sexual  reference] superior?

Unfortunately, from previous experience even if I genuinely attempt to phrase things neutrally, some people here tend to react strongly to things I say. There's some irony there, given the present subject matter.



Yea, pretty easy to understand where you are coming from.
But don't make the fallacy of thinking that understanding your argument is the same as agreeing with it... If you lack the ability to deal with the idea that language is more complex and dynamic than a list of words that is your problem.

If I understand you, you're saying that language evolves and while X used to mean Y, now it means Z by virtue of popular consensus? The problem there is that "popular consensus" varies by cultural group. Just because one group adopts slang doesn't make it universal.  This is by no means a problem exclusive to me. For example, if I say "Joe is pissed." What do you think that means? That he's angry? Well, to lots of people, that expression has nothing to do with anger...it means that Joe is drunk.

What about "faggot?" If you overhear somebody say they hate faggots, think you might have a problem with that? Imagine your surprise when you discover he's talking about food. Not everyone agrees on what words mean. Would you tell a gay man that you hate faggots and then try to tell him it's "his problem" that he's not adapting to a complex and dynamic use of words? I think you probably wouldn't.

frostshotgg

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Re: Aesthetic Vulgarity?
« Reply #22 on: November 29, 2013, 06:17:01 am »

Can't even be assed to fuck with quotes.
I don't know. Could you phrase it in a less demeaningly strawman way?

Not sure that I can. I was being literal. I don't even know what you're suggesting is a strawman. Let's try it this way: If instead of "I love cats" I say "I testicles love cats," does that sound odd to you? Does "testicles" seem like a peculiar word to add to the sentence "I like cats?" Does it seem to you that it doesn't particularly add anything good to the sentence?

If so, then the reason is probably that when you hear the word "testicles" you think of...testicles. Right? So now...instead "I love cats" what if I say "I fucking love cats." See, now, to your ears, you hear me saying "I love cats...a whole lot!" But what I hear is..."I fucking love cats." As in fucking. Because just like the word "testicles" means "testicles" to you, the word "fucking" means "fucking to me.

Does that make sense?
No it fucking doesn't. Nobody uses testicles as a word for emphasis. As we've established people DO use "fucking" for emphasis. The word doesn't have one goddamn meaning, and you well know it. At this point you can't possibly be anything but trolling if you refuse to acknowledge that.



LB, you are trying to do a one-word substitution here, and it simply doesn't work.

And yet it worked perfectly well for all the examples I gave without swearing. Why is that?

Picking and choosing individual phrases to suit your arguments aside, they really didn't. They don't have the same meaning. Yet another thing you refuse to acknowledge is that words have CONNOTATIONS. That's right, words that have the SAME dictionary definition have DIFFERENT connotations! IT'S ALMOST LIKE LANGUAGE ISN'T READING OUT OF A DICTIONARY.

Quote
Do you realize how this sentence makes you sound?

No.

Then you're disgustingly ignorant of how people work.



would you kindly [sexual reference] stop [sexual reference] acting like [scatological reference]
[sexual reference] you are [sexual  reference] superior?

Unfortunately, from previous experience even if I genuinely attempt to phrase things neutrally, some people here tend to react strongly to things I say. There's some irony there, given the present subject matter.

Your version of "neutrally" is clearly not neutral. 99% of the things that get strong reactions are because what you thought was "neutral" was obviously not. That's usually how it works. You know that old adage, "Idiocy is trying the same thing over and over again and expecting a different result"? You're a fucking massive idiot.



Yea, pretty easy to understand where you are coming from.
But don't make the fallacy of thinking that understanding your argument is the same as agreeing with it... If you lack the ability to deal with the idea that language is more complex and dynamic than a list of words that is your problem.

If I understand you, you're saying that language evolves and while X used to mean Y, now it means Z by virtue of popular consensus? The problem there is that "popular consensus" varies by cultural group. Just because one group adopts slang doesn't make it universal.  This is by no means a problem exclusive to me. For example, if I say "Joe is pissed." What do you think that means? That he's angry? Well, to lots of people, that expression has nothing to do with anger...it means that Joe is drunk.

What about "faggot?" If you overhear somebody say they hate faggots, think you might have a problem with that? Imagine your surprise when you discover he's talking about food. Not everyone agrees on what words mean. Would you tell a gay man that you hate faggots and then try to tell him it's "his problem" that he's not adapting to a complex and dynamic use of words? I think you probably wouldn't.
CONTEXT MATTERS YOU FUCKING MORON. That's all there is to say. You can pick and choose phrases and take them out of context by reaching for your thesaurus all you want, but all it does is make you look stupid, particularly when acknowledging that a word having multiple definitions is completely hypocritical with your constant refusal to accept that "fucking" can mean both having sex AND a modifier to emphasize something, among other things.
In conclusion: 1/10 for making me reply. Carry on with this garbage and I'll assume you're trolling. Either that or you're so disgustingly bigoted that you need to be banned.
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alexandertnt

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Re: Aesthetic Vulgarity?
« Reply #23 on: November 29, 2013, 06:32:26 am »

Quote
If so, then the reason is probably that when you hear the word "testicles" you think of...testicles. Right? So now...instead "I love cats" what if I say "I fucking love cats." See, now, to your ears, you hear me saying "I love cats...a whole lot!" But what I hear is..."I fucking love cats." As in fucking. Because just like the word "testicles" means "testicles" to you, the word "fucking" means "fucking to me.

After reading this, I believe part of what Lord Bucket is saying that Lord Bucket and certain other people potentially do not interpret swearing in situations like this to have meaning, not so much that swearing in general doesn't or shoudn't have meaning.
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This is when I imagine the hilarity which may happen if certain things are glichy. Such as targeting your own body parts to eat.

You eat your own head
YOU HAVE BEEN STRUCK DOWN!

LordBucket

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Re: Aesthetic Vulgarity?
« Reply #24 on: November 29, 2013, 07:02:08 am »

I believe part of what Lord Bucket is saying that Lord Bucket and certain other people potentially do not interpret
swearing in situations like this to have meaning, not so much that swearing in general doesn't or shoudn't have meaning.

Well, it's not an issue of understanding meaning. Yes, I do (usually) understand more or less what these people are saying. The first time I heard the word "badonkadonk" I immediately guessed it was either of two parts of female anatomy, and then consulted urban dictionary to find out which of the two it was.

In the case of swearing, yes...I've heard it enough that I understand what people who do it are saying. But understanding what they mean doesn't change the more familiar association. For example, I will write a sentence using the following translation matrix:

oozing pustule = cat
nasty puke = puppy
swallowing = cuddling
licking up = petting

"I love licking up oozling pustules. Nasty pukes are adorable, too! I love swallowing them and I could swallow nasty pukes all day long!"

Yes, you can easily look at the translation and figure out the meaning. And if you heard people substitute these particular words often enough, eventually you wouldn't have to look at the chart. You'd know what they meant. But you wouldn't just suddenly forget the literal meaning of those words. And even if you spent years occasionally hearing people use "nasty puke" to mean "puppy" ...you're still going to remember what "puke" is.

And...I just have to ask...WHY would anybody want to speak this way? Some may accuse me of making strawman arguments here...but it's really not that different. The word "shit" is a real word. It has a real meaning.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Shit

"Shit is an English word that is usually considered vulgar and profane in Modern English. As a noun it refers to fecal matter (excrement) and as a verb it means to defecate or defecate in; in the plural ("the shits") it means diarrhea."

When I substitute "oozing pustule" in place of cat, it's very easy to look at that and see that it's a very silly thing to do. It's obviously ridiculous to suggest saying nasty puke instead of puppy and then expect people to "figure out your intended meaning via context." So I ask you...why does it make sense to substitute the word that means fecal excrement in place of "stuff?"

Just...why would you do that?

Toady One

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Re: Aesthetic Vulgarity?
« Reply #25 on: November 29, 2013, 07:14:02 am »

Creating a thread to specifically isolate an argument that was already going out of control doesn't tend to work.  I'm not going to reopen this.
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