Best of Maledicta: The International Journal of Verbal Aggression

Reinhold Aman, Author Running Press Book Publishers $12.95 (0p) ISBN 978-0-89471-499-3
Culled from the pages of Aman's Maledicta: The International Journal of Verbal Aggression, this book analyzes ""all those words and expressions shunned by academia,'' including ``bad words,'' slang and blasphemies found in some 220 languages going back to the beginnings of written language. Technical writer Martha Cornog examines the private language between lovers evident in pet names people have given genitals (``Put Alice in Wonderland''). Surgeon C. J. Scheiner lists medical personnel's pejoratives for patients (``fruit salada group of stroke patients''). In the book's outstanding entry, ``Viet-Speak,'' retired Sgt. Maj. Dan Cragg describes the ``intimacy with horror'' that is reflected in the language of U.S. soldiers in Vietnamhis rewriting of a 1971 version of ``Little Red Riding Hood'' by an unknown military newspaper reporter uses typical ``grunt'' language: ``Get some!'' screams the Hood. ``Wow, did you zap that zip, papa-san!'' Aman notes that most philologists, linguists and lexicographers refuse to record such language, and this bawdy lexicon succeeds in bringing ``dirty'' albeit common, words out of the closet. (July)
Reviewed on: 03/31/1987
Release date: 04/01/1987
Genre: Nonfiction
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