Are you constantly struggling to avoid slipping in F-bombs during family dinners or work meetings? Well, we have some good news!
In a recent study by the Languages Sciences Journal, a group of researchers set out to test the theory that people who swear more often only do it because they lack the education to use better, non-vulgar words. Turns out, people who have wonderfully colorful language are probably just smarter.
The study required test subjects to say as many different swear words in one minute as they could. Those subjects were also asked to do the same thing for other random groupings, like plants or animals. The subjects who could spout off more dirty words were also able to name a larger number of things in the non-sweary groups too.
So turns out that frequent swearing could just be a case of using one’s larger vocabulary.
Unfortunately, when it comes to taboo language, it is a common assumption that people who swear frequently are lazy, do not have an adequate vocabulary, lack education, or simply cannot control themselves. The overall finding of this set of studies, that taboo fluency is positively correlated with other measures of verbal fluency, undermines the [normal] view of swearing.
This study is actually just one of many that aims to prove the benefits of swearing. It’s already been shown that yelling out a hearty f-word can help the body deal with pain. Another study shows that swearing at work can be “a morale booster” between co-workers. So go ahead and swear at your boss. You’ll probably get a raise. Or get fired. Whatever.