Category Archives: Peter Finley Dunne
Apr 04 comments
REPRESSION OF EXPRESSION
If you are involved in religious circles you have undoubtedly come across the parent who not only doesn’t want their child to swear (an admirable quality) but goes even further and doesn’t allow their child to use even mild alternatives for certain swear words. They can’t say dang instead of damn, they can’t say heck instead of hell, they can’t say shoot instead of shit.
The parent is obviously trying to instill some virtue in their child and they think that by banning even the alternative words they are doing that. It seems misguided to me. What I think can be in danger of happening isn’t a formation of a virtuous child, but the formation of a repressed child. Through the squelching of their expressiveness the child learns that it’s not ok to be expressive, simple as that.
I have heard it said that the idea behind this repression of expression is to teach the child to use the best and most proper expressive terms. In my opinion, those alternative words ARE the most proper expressive terms and that is why they are used. It doesn’t show a lack of ability for expression, it IS the expression.
What do you think?