disameliorative effect of euphemisms

Mark A. Mandel Mark_Mandel at DRAGONSYS.COM
Thu Mar 1 18:37:45 UTC 2001

Gregory {Greg} Downing <gd2 at NYU.EDU> writes:

With regard to the topic of the current thread, the personal name Crapper
was never a common noun, and the common noun "crapper" never had a
non-pejorative meaning.

I would hesitate to call the common noun "crapper", meaning 'toilet,
bathroom, place intended to be used for defecation', pejorative. Slang,
yes. Vulgar, yes. But it doesn't describe its referent as being any worse
than it actually is. "Non-euphemistic" does not imply "pejorative".

Somewhat OT: This calls to mind Ursula K. Le Guin's coinage "shittery", in
her novel _The Dispossessed_, with its implication in context of
straightforward non-euphemistic speech.

   Mark A. Mandel : Dragon Systems, a Lernout & Hauspie company
          Mark_Mandel at dragonsys.com : Senior Linguist
 320 Nevada St., Newton, MA 02460, USA : http://www.dragonsys.com
                     (speaking for myself)

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