Re: South Park B/L/U: another opinion

Koen Holtman (
Thu, 8 Jul 1999 10:05:18 +0200 (MET DST)

On Wed, 7 Jul 1999, Jeff Bone wrote:

> I've always wondered why "fuck" was the "dirtiest" word... seems like
> it'd be "goddamn," (at least to those religiously inclined in that
> direction) but apparently that's acceptable enough to air on the Comedy
> Channel these days. Any thoughts?

Fun factoids from Holland: the dutch religiously inclined 'association
against cursing' ('bond tegen het vloeken') quite consistently
believes that swear words invoking religigion are worse than those
invoking various bodily functions. Swear words in the dutch language
usually have to do with God in one way or another, the use of bodily
function swear words is much less frequent than in, say, english. In
dutch subtitles to english-spoken TV, it is quite common to see
english swear words related to bodily functions being translated into
dutch swear words related to religion. So the 'association against
cursing' has been publishing english->dutch swear word translation
dictionaries, to encourage translaters to 'correctly' translate
bodily-function english swear words to bodily-function dutch swear
words. Quite a logical thing for them to do, really.

Recently, by the way, dutch has been importing a lot of swear words from
english. (For some reason that escapes me, US gangsta rap is incredibly
popular in Holland). 'fuck' and 'shit' are perfectly good dutch words by
now. In dutch, 'fuck' is a very mild swear word, and many a dutch person
has shot himself in the foot by translating the dutch 'fuck' in the
obvious way when talking english to a native english speaker.