AIBU to start a thread discussing the word Cunt?

(222 Posts)
FeegleFion Mon 17-Jun-13 19:29:17

I know before I start, that there will be a lot of you who really disagree with using the word Cunt.

I want to start a discussion about it, as I personally, feel that using the word in a positive manner is to be encouraged.

I am from Glasgow and I use/ have always used the word as a term of affection "You're a good wee cunt you".

I wanted to start this thread because I have just come across the following on a Women's Rights forum and I really hope to change negative opinion and association:

CUNT

*Considered to be the most vile, obscene and vulgar 'swear word' in the English language, the word 'Cunt' in the vernacular means vagina.
As if that is not indication enough why it is considered so vile in the vagina-hating Patriarchy, the word itself was originally a term of respect and reverence for a powerful, spiritually enlightened woman.*

*'Cunt' derives from 'Kunda' or 'Cunti', the Oriental Great Goddess.
She was the Great Yoni of the Universe, where all life came from and to where all life returned for renewal.*

From this same word came the words country, kin and kind.

So, for your delectation, rumination and reasoned discussion, I give you, the word _Cunt_ discuss.

curlew Mon 17-Jun-13 19:35:46

I am old, and was a feminist before most mumsnetters were born. For me the use of the word as the worst of insults is just so teemed in misogyny that I can't bring myself to use it and I hate to hear it.

I know people talk about reclaiming it, but I worry that they are "reclaiming" it in the same way that the "laddettes" reclaimed getting pissed out of their brains and falling over in gutters. Proving that women can bahave as badly as some men sometimes do is not feminism!

curlew Mon 17-Jun-13 19:36:24

That should be "steeped in misogyny"...,,,,,

annieseed1 Mon 17-Jun-13 19:38:43

If cunt is used in a positive manner some other derogatory term will take its place. These debates are ridiculous, people will always find a word to express their meaning, the word itself is irrelevant. Other cultures use entirely different languages to express the exact same things we do in English.

That feminist quote is also the type of drivel that turns people away from feminism.

FeegleFion Mon 17-Jun-13 19:40:15

curlew great point and I am with you, in so much as I don't ever use the word to insult anyone.

I do see why some women do in terms of removing the taboo veil surrounding it but for me, a cunt is a beautiful piece of a woman.

curlew Mon 17-Jun-13 19:41:28

Annieseed- had you thought about debating the subject in a sensible way? It has the potential to be very interesting.

1Veryhungrycaterpillar Mon 17-Jun-13 19:41:39

I read somewhere that it originally meant 'Wedge shaped tool'

dancemom Mon 17-Jun-13 19:42:40

I'm from Glasgow and would never use that word - its vile!

curlew Mon 17-Jun-13 19:43:24

I think it's a beautiful piece of a woman too- but that particular ord for it is, in my opinion, unreclaimable. How about reviving "quim" instead? I like quim!

1Veryhungrycaterpillar Mon 17-Jun-13 19:44:50

I hate the word Minge, it sounds so gross

IgnatiusSprat Mon 17-Jun-13 19:45:34

I'm willing to bet that the remark I'm about to make is thick-witted and will be rightly shot down by someone who knows far more about these things than me... But - the thing I don't understand about some people's objection to the word cunt - like yours, curlew - is that there's plenty of insults that are based upon male genitalia; arguably more than female; and no one gets aggy about them and says their representative of anti-men attitudes. Why is that?

As I said, this is probably a stupid question...

cosydressinggown Mon 17-Jun-13 19:46:08

I think that if you can't think of a better word to use, you probably shouldn't speak. It's got a vile history and the potential to cause a lot of offence.

FeegleFion Mon 17-Jun-13 19:47:36

annie - but this word is the word up for debate, on this thread and if it's something you find ridiculous, you are free to leave.

I'm glad you agree that it has potential, curlew.

1Veryhungrycaterpillar
"I read somewhere that it originally meant 'Wedge shaped tool'" grin It probably does, alongside lots of other words.

HotCrossPun Mon 17-Jun-13 19:53:40

Until I joined MN I always thought of it as a really offensive swear word.

After reading the feminist boards and seeing it written down so many times, it's lost it's impact for me.

I wouldn't use it in every day language, but that's because I don't swear very much anyway.

I shouted, ''Oh balls!'' at something the other day and my colleagues were all laughing because they had never heard me swear before grin

FeegleFion Mon 17-Jun-13 19:57:24

dance I'd guess we're from very different areas of Glasgow. I could be wrong though.

curlew you use quim, I'll use cunt and we can both agree, it's beautiful.

Ignatius I believe there are never any stupid questions. I obviously don't object to the word, so can't answer your question. Hopefully, one of the posters who do object to it, will be kind enough to answer your question.

cosydressinggown
"I think that if you can't think of a better word to use, you probably shouldn't speak. It's got a vile history and the potential to cause a lot of offence."

Fair point, cosy and one you aren't alone in expressing.

Naebother Mon 17-Jun-13 20:11:43

Feegle. In Glasgow its used as a term of affection. "A wright ya cunt" is a greeting between pals.

Wouldn't use it in a job interview though.

I tend to use it when I'm really angry and thinking about it now, cos i never have before, would like to use it in a different way.

MalcolmTuckersMum Mon 17-Jun-13 20:15:41

I simply do not, and never will, understand the squealing that it's a "vile" word. Vile? Really? Who thinks this and why?

Oh - and that ""discuss"" thing? That gets what's left of my nerves twitching!

Pouncer1 Mon 17-Jun-13 20:16:39

Don't know if this counts but my DF uses this word in an affectionate way too but says it in welsh not English! grin

NayFindus Mon 17-Jun-13 20:18:25

I think that all the consonants being plosive make it a really satisfying sweary word when you really want to vent, but it did used to make me physically cringe, and I seldom use it. I'm more annoyed that I've spelt nae wrong to be honest.

FeegleFion Mon 17-Jun-13 20:21:37

Naebother
"Feegle. In Glasgow its used as a term of affection. "A wright ya cunt" is a greeting between pals."

"Wouldn't use it in a job interview though."

"I tend to use it when I'm really angry and thinking about it now, cos i never have before, would like to use it in a different way."

Nae I was wondering if this was a term of affection only in the area of Glasgow I grew up in...phew!

Yy to clarify: this is not a greeting for anything other than the most friendly of associates grin

Malcom the discuss was just my sense of humour. Let your nerves settle smile

LyingWitchInTheWardrobe Mon 17-Jun-13 20:22:26

Urgh. Why don't MNHQ give attention-seekers a little board of their own, far - very far -away.

I feel in need of a very hot shower and scrub. sad

LyingWitchInTheWardrobe Mon 17-Jun-13 20:22:46

forgot to say - and HIDE.

ThePskettiIncident Mon 17-Jun-13 20:24:07

Ask Chaucer! He used it a lot.

Quim, quinny, quaint, quent, cunt!

It's a great Middle English word. See germaine Greer for her attempted reclamation of the word in the 70s.

FeegleFion Mon 17-Jun-13 20:24:54

It all matters Pouncer smile

Nay Great point! also it's easy to name-change, go change your nay to nae wink

FeegleFion Mon 17-Jun-13 20:27:15

LyingWitchInTheWardrobe Mon 17-Jun-13 20:22:26
Urgh. Why don't MNHQ give attention-seekers a little board of their own, far - very far -away.

I feel in need of a very hot shower and scrub.

LyingWitchInTheWardrobe Mon 17-Jun-13 20:22:46
forgot to say - and HIDE.

Relax and go to that attention-seeking little board then Lying. Nobody forced you here.

HTH grin

Coconutty Mon 17-Jun-13 20:30:37

I use the word cunt all the time, sometimes there is just no other worthy alternative.

What a cunt. See?

Feminine Mon 17-Jun-13 20:34:01

I hate it.

Am always saying so.

It sounds totally stupid, and always makes the poster look like an ass.

An ass, trying to be cool!

thegreylady Mon 17-Jun-13 20:34:10

I am another who hates to hear it, see it written down or allow it to cross my mind.I have never said it nor have I ever heard my dh or any of my dc or stepdc say it.
If you want to use a part of your body as an obscenity carry on.
Thread hidden.

i would call you a cunt but you lack both the warmth and the depth.

THERhubarb Mon 17-Jun-13 20:42:07

LyingWitch I didn't realise we had moderators?

Feegle. I don't like it (whaddya mean you already knew? wink)
To me, reclaming the word 'cunt' is a bit like black people reclaiming the word 'nigger'. There is a huge divide even in the black community which means that the word 'nigger' can never truly be reclaimed because it's still viewed as very offensive by so many. And of course there's a whole section of society who could never use the word without being labelled as hugely offensive and racist.

The word 'cunt' might have lovely origins but it has been debased by a misogynistic society who now use it as a derogatory term to offend women. The misogynistic view is, of course, that the female genitalia is dirty and offensive.

Think about it, how many offensive terms can you think of for the female genitalia? Compare that with how many offensive terms there are for male genitalia. There is a huge discrepancy.

I'm from Manchester and we use the term 'cock' in an endearing manner. My dad calls me cock. However I would not use it outside of Manchester because someone would take offensive at that, obviously.

Personally speaking. I don't like the word 'cunt' and would never use it myself. It gives off an 'ugly' vibe and I don't think that women's genitalia is at all ugly. It makes me cringe to hear women calling each other a cunt.

THERhubarb Mon 17-Jun-13 20:45:05

I wonder what the point is of contributing to a thread and then hiding it?

If people don't feel mature enough to have a debate on the word cunt then perhaps they should tuck themselves up in bed? If you disagree with it, no matter how strongly, surely you can both vocalise your thoughts/feelings and debate the topic in a grown-up way?

I find no offence on this thread, just another point of view which I happen to disagree with personally. Hiding it is just so, well, immature really?

LEMisdisappointed Mon 17-Jun-13 20:47:53

If people start reusing the word quim - i tell you now, i am going to saw off my own ears!!!

I like the word cunt. My cunt isn't dirty or offensive so I will continue to refer to it as I see fit.

I don't agree that there are more insults for women's genitals than men's. There are far more for men's.

twooter Mon 17-Jun-13 20:48:32

Blah, it's just a swear word, like any other. Not one i use, but it really doesn't provoke any emotion different to Any other swear word.

LEMisdisappointed Mon 17-Jun-13 20:48:42

claude i am So going to adopt that phrase - love it!

Morgause Mon 17-Jun-13 20:48:44

I am old, and was a feminist before most mumsnetters were born. For me the use of the word as the worst of insults is just so teemed in misogyny that I can't bring myself to use it and I hate to hear it.

^^
This

IgnatiusSprat Mon 17-Jun-13 20:49:03

No one has answered me. Ha! In some small way I feel like a win.

<punches air>

<says cunt>

curlew Mon 17-Jun-13 20:49:21

"But - the thing I don't understand about some people's objection to the word cunt - like yours, curlew - is that there's plenty of insults that are based upon male genitalia; arguably more than female; and no one gets aggy about them and says their representative of anti-men attitudes"

Because none of the insults based on male genitalia carry the weight of misogyny and oppression that cunt does. "Public" language was made by men- the insults that involve their own genitalia are usually affectionate, jokey. For really, vicious degrading insults both to use to other men or to woman they used women's bodies.

IgnatiusSprat Mon 17-Jun-13 20:49:21

Ahem. Like I win.

IgnatiusSprat Mon 17-Jun-13 20:50:48

Bugger curlew - x posts! grin

I don't agree actually, I think calling someone a cock or a dick can be just as aggressive as calling someone a twat or a cunt. And I don't see how "public" language has been made by men?

curlew Mon 17-Jun-13 20:50:53

Sorry didn't realise it was some sort of competition. hmm

FeegleFion Mon 17-Jun-13 20:50:56

THERhubarb - Excellent point, and I guess a lot of women want to reclaim the word from the misogynists to say it's not dirty, it's ours but I also see that what curlew argues in relation to being careful not to turn it into the whole 'ladette' reclaiming the weekend.

Believe it or not, I moved to Manchester about 7 or 8 years ago and was greatly offended when a colleague addressed me as cock grin

As an aside, I wondered for quite some time, who this 'rkid' was because everyone seemed to know him and talk about him blush

yaimee Mon 17-Jun-13 20:54:22

There are words that I feel much more strongly about, like slut/slag.
I think cunt can be used in a non offensive way, I don't think slut can.

THERhubarb Mon 17-Jun-13 20:55:53

curlew yes. Offhand I can think of these:

dick, cock, bollocks, balls, prick (none of which are THAT offensive)

and for women:

cunt, fanny, pussy, twat, minge, bush, prick-purse, manhole, crotch cobbler

Just off the top of my head. Most names for the vagina are hugely offensive and relate to what most sexists think the vagina is there for, i.e. for their usage only.

I'm also of an age where the word cunt has never ever been acceptable and is just about the worst insult you could think of. I also think it's horrible because of the way it's pronounced, with a sharp 'u'.

I just wouldn't use it.

curlew Mon 17-Jun-13 20:55:54

I wasn't expecting you to agree. I was just explaining why for some women, the word "cunt" has too much history to be reclaimed.

But I honestly don't think any can possibly say that "dick" is as aggressive and insulting as "cunt". Really.

THERhubarb Mon 17-Jun-13 20:57:23

"You alreet our kid?"

HATE that!

grin

THERhubarb Mon 17-Jun-13 20:58:06

Gotta go. Just for the record, I side with everything curlew says.

grin

IgnatiusSprat Mon 17-Jun-13 21:00:42

I never suggested it could or should be 'recalimed'. I simply wondered why the old argument that it's misogynistic when using words like dick or cock aren't considered by the same people to be misandric. And I'm still wondering.

and nobody has mentioned Brian yet: the Great Yoni of the Universe

1Veryhungrycaterpillar Mon 17-Jun-13 21:01:43

Crotch cobbler!

snowynight Mon 17-Jun-13 21:04:30

Curlew you are spot on. I never use the word as an insult, but have been known to use it to describe my own vagina in the heat of the moment blush. This is how we can reclaim the word.

yaimee Mon 17-Jun-13 21:05:06

And any word or phase that suggest that a vagina is nothing but a receptacle for a man, I find that more offensive too.

IgnatiusSprat Mon 17-Jun-13 21:06:46

And any word or phase that suggest that a vagina is nothing but a receptacle for a man, I find that more offensive too.

Yes, I hate that. And any word that describes the penis as a weapon. Like 'pork sword' or anything of that ilk. It's vile

snowynight Mon 17-Jun-13 21:08:52

Ignatius - because calling someone (particularly a man) a cunt is considered to be the most offensive thing you can ever say.

calling him a cock just isn't as bad.

curlew Mon 17-Jun-13 21:08:54

I must have not explained myself properly. Culturally, cunt has always been seen as a "worse" word than any of the other genitalia based insults. Men have always used dick, cock and so on amongst themselves, and while they can be aggressive iif the context and tone makes them so, men have always reached for "cunt " when they really want to insult someone, man or woman. Basically it' saying that the most disgusting, offensive, degraded thing they can possibly think of are women's genitals. Not just genitals in general- women's genitals.

1Veryhungrycaterpillar Mon 17-Jun-13 21:09:32

What about the disgusting words that claim to describe the Vaginas appearance, 'badly packed kebab' anyone??

snowynight Mon 17-Jun-13 21:12:16

Yy curlew - i have no problem with cunt being used to describe a vagina, just hate it as an insult.

IgnatiusSprat Mon 17-Jun-13 21:13:28

Oh OK. OK that makes sense. I didn't know that it was considered by the people who use it to be the ultimate in insults - I just assumed that if people were using it, then they didn't consider it to be beyond the pale - in the same way that people use it all the time on here.

Thank you for explaining it. Told you it was a stupid question (!)

WorraLiberty Mon 17-Jun-13 21:16:54

I think it's funny that so many of the posters who don't like seeing cunt used as an insult, can often be seen on the relationship topic saying things like....

"Your DH is a prick"

"OMG why does he act like a dick"

"What a fucking bell end"

Etc....

And any word or phase that suggest that a vagina is nothing but a receptacle for a man, I find that more offensive too.

You might want to stop using the word 'vagina' then as it means 'sword sheath'

mrsjay Mon 17-Jun-13 21:21:32

to call somebody a cunt is insulting I dont care if people want to reclaim a swear word and make it whatever women calling each other cunts is just awful and Im not saying that as some sort of prim and proper thing it was traditionally used by men to insult each other as in you are nothing more than a cunt (vagina) there fore not worthy , <climbs down off soap box>

mrsjay Mon 17-Jun-13 21:22:56

ecause calling someone (particularly a man) a cunt is considered to be the most offensive thing you can ever say.

^ ^ this what I should said keep it short and not rambling

curlew Mon 17-Jun-13 21:44:47

Worraliberty- we were just talking about that- you might want to read back a bit?

WorraLiberty Mon 17-Jun-13 21:47:22

I read before I posted thanks curlew

curlew Mon 17-Jun-13 21:50:05

So do you think that dick, prick and cunt are all about equal levels of offensiveness?

yaimee Mon 17-Jun-13 21:51:03

Really akiss that's interesting. I love learning about the origins of words. Still like it better than 'prick pocket' mentioned up thread.

WorraLiberty Mon 17-Jun-13 21:52:30

I think it's hypocritical to object to one set of genitalia being used as an insult and not another.

HollyBerryBush Mon 17-Jun-13 21:54:40

cunt = quint = used in Chaucer and Shakespeare.

Get offended if you like. But most people have no idea of the origin of words

curlew Mon 17-Jun-13 22:00:19

But there is a hierarchy of insults and swear words.. "You tit!" example, is, I suppose, on a par with "you dick!" "Damn" is milder than"Bugger", "Fuck" stronger than "shit".

I can't think of an insult drawn from men's genitals that has anything like the strength and cultural baggage that "cunt" has- but maybe I'm wrong?

FeegleFion Mon 17-Jun-13 22:03:08

I actually agree that the word Cunt was originally used as a misogynistic slur and even those preposterous descriptives such as 'hairy axe wound' etc were used to keep women oppressed, whereas cock and prick aren't quite as offensive IYSWIM?

But that's the whole point of reclaiming our Cunts as ours.

WorraLiberty Mon 17-Jun-13 22:04:52

But why would tit be on a par with dick?

A dick is a reproductive organ and I'd say it's pretty much on par with a cunt.

But having said that, calling anyone a body part is childish anyway so I don't understand why some people take this debate so seriously.

And I've read the OP saying a couple of times now that 'a cunt is a beautiful thing'.

Well to me it's no more beautiful than your ear or your arse

It's just a body part.

I can't think of an insult drawn from men's genitals that has anything like the strength and cultural baggage that "cunt" has- but maybe I'm wrong?

But isn't that a good thing? Men's genitals are ridiculed and laughed at far more than women's

WorraLiberty Mon 17-Jun-13 22:07:24

But that's the whole point of reclaiming our Cunts as ours.

Well I don't know about you, but my cunt has always been mine...Lol

While there's freedom of speech, people can and will call each other cunts...even if some people don't like it.

curlew Mon 17-Jun-13 22:09:04

I was talking about th hierarchy of insults, worraliberty- rather than an analysis of body parts!

IgnatiusSprat Mon 17-Jun-13 22:13:21

I didn't know that historically cunt had a greater aggressive or sexist meaning than using any other bodily related organ as an insult. Understanding that means I can understand why some women find it to be more insulting than saying 'dick' etc. On the one hand I think it's irrelevant; no one I know who uses the word 'cunt' does it in the way that curlew and others have described (as the 'ultimate' insult: the worst thing you could be is a vagina). But on the other hand, if I'm to argue that it's cultural roots are irrelevant then I may as well argue that a man calling another man a 'cock sucker' is on a par with calling them a dick. And it's not. It's homophobic. So....

I dunno. I just tend to avoid the issue entirely by not saying it.

IgnatiusSprat Mon 17-Jun-13 22:13:37

I'm not sure than any of that makes sense outside of my head confused

Sheshelob Mon 17-Jun-13 22:17:37

The thing I like about this thread, other than crotch cobbler and the constant use of the word cunt, is that some of the older commenters are whacking down their long-term feminist credentials as if that some how trumps the conversation. Like, "I was at Greenham, yo."

grin

I will defend my use of the word cunt because I think the more it is used, the less powerful it becomes. There are racist and homophobic terms that I will never say or write down quite shocked that someone did as a white, straight woman, which I don't rank cunt even close to in offensiveness.

Is cunt "hate speech"? I, for one, think not.

Sheshelob Mon 17-Jun-13 22:19:45

And can I just add that neither penises nor vaginas re going o win any beauty contests. Except in California, perhaps.

IgnatiusSprat Mon 17-Jun-13 22:20:43

Speak for your own vagina, Sheshelob. Mine's bloody gorgeous.

Sheshelob Mon 17-Jun-13 22:25:39

After a 3c degree tear, she has started to look like Peter Ustinov in a wind tunnel.

FeegleFion Mon 17-Jun-13 22:26:41

Yes Worra haha, mine cunt is mine own but that wasn't the actual point I was making and my cunt is much nicer to look at than either my arse or my ear wink

FeegleFion Mon 17-Jun-13 22:27:46

SheShelob Exactly, the more the word is used the less taboo it will be grin

IgnatiusSprat Mon 17-Jun-13 22:28:30

Jaysus Feegle you must have fucking ugly ears grin

Sheshelob Mon 17-Jun-13 22:29:51

Ig grin

youmeatsix Mon 17-Jun-13 22:40:20

Feegle. In Glasgow its used as a term of affection. "A wright ya cunt" is a greeting between pals. it really isnt, good grief! born and raised in Glasgow, i have never ever once heard it used as a term of affection confused

WorraLiberty Mon 17-Jun-13 22:46:14

But to say 'cunts are beautiful things', is as pointless as saying arses and ears are beautiful things.

Having seen the TV show Embarrassing Bodies, I can assure you that not all cunts, ears or arse holes are beautiful wink

The same as all penises and testicles aren't.

snowynight Mon 17-Jun-13 22:46:14

Sheshelob - i "was" at Greenham, funnily enough (yo).

curlew Mon 17-Jun-13 22:47:05

I suppose it depends what bit of Glasgow. And how imaginative you are.

snowynight Mon 17-Jun-13 22:47:27

was

d'oh

curlew Mon 17-Jun-13 22:51:16

"The thing I like about this thread, other than crotch cobbler and the constant use of the word cunt, is that some of the older commenters are whacking down their long-term feminist credentials as if that some how trumps the conversation. Like, "I was at Greenham, yo."

I don't think that's what I'm doing- I hope I'm not. What I am trying to do is explain why the word is so very offensive to me, and why I don't think it can ever be reclaimed. I think it's interesting that people have been trying to reclaim it for more than 25 years to my certain knowledge with very little success...........

thegreylady Mon 17-Jun-13 23:04:41

Didn't get round to hiding thread so back now we are talking etymology. I believe the origin lies in the Welsh cwm (quim) meaning valley because of its appearance. My dh1 used the word quim which I minded less because it has never been used as an obscenity.

Lovecat Mon 17-Jun-13 23:16:38

In common with many, I used to think cunt was an appalling word. The worst swear. Then I started thinking about why that was - and the only reason I can see is because it refers to part of a woman's body. So why is a specifically female body part considered more offensive than something specifically male? It's just a part of a human body, after all. I think by accepting cunt as such an offensive word, we as women are perpetuating a negative stereotype and taboo.

I went through a stage of saying 'don't say cunt as an insult because cunts are lovely things' but then you get looked at a bit hmm like you're about to whip out a mirror and start a bit of yoni worship... (interesting though that for a lot of women the idea of looking at this part of their own bodies is somehow a bit weird and yuck...)

So I ended up using it both as descriptive of a part of my body, and, since discovering MN, occasionally as an insult. I do think that it's a word that needs to be robbed of it's "power", normalised, even, although I can understand that to the older generation (if I can say that at 46!) it will probably remain a taboo word.

I'm probably desensitised to it now thanks to MN, I do find myself thinking it a lot more and have to watch that I don't say it in front of my mother, for example! However the MN classic 'Atrocious Cunt' is a fabulous insult and it makes me smile every time I see it grin

FeegleFion Mon 17-Jun-13 23:18:22

Ig I'm sure you rally didn't mean to be so rude about my ears!

I just have a very beautiful cunt wink

Youme I assure you, it's used. Also, may I point you to the fact that I wasn't the original poster of that particular comment you are quoting?

curlew no, you are coming across brilliantly. Your opinion is extremely valued.

FeegleFion Mon 17-Jun-13 23:26:58

Lovecat thank you, excellent contribution.

In fact, thanks everyone, whatever your opinion, if you've taken the time to actually open this up for discussion.

It's a shame a few people have taken the 'insult then hide thread' or 'I declare, clutch pearls, hide thread' approach, but it's only to be expected.

Also, thanks for not hiding the thread GreyLady the thread is not here to be goady, I promise.

KatyTheCleaningLady Mon 17-Jun-13 23:58:45

I really do not understand the hysterics over this word. To me, it's just a word to use when "bitch" isn't heavy enough. It's a great word because it's so guttural, and it combines well with other short, guttural words like in "dumb ugly cunt." Or "cunt punt."

I actually met a Scottish woman who said that it's the worst word she'd ever, ever heard. I told her that for Americans, that would be "nigger." (Only, I said it as "the n-word" as I can't stand to say that word.) She replied "Oh, no! Cunt is much, much worse than nigger!"

At first, I thought she was just a dreadfully ignorant and possibly racist fool, but I suppose the word "nigger" doesn't have the same emotional impact in Scotland as it does in the United States.

Either that, or she just really, really, really hates the word "cunt."

I have to admit: whenever I hear a women object to it, I inwardly roll my eyes and think "what a silly cunt."

KatyTheCleaningLady Tue 18-Jun-13 00:01:43

Also, I don't want to "reclaim" the word and try to make it something positive. Fuck that. I need a word for people who are at least a couple of degrees more hateful than bitches/assholes.

For that matter, I'm not sold on the idea that our "yonis" are so fucking beautiful, either. I'm kind of of the opinion that they're funny looking and a bit smelly. Just like male genitalia. For fuck's sake. I don't need to embrace everything feminine and declare it sacred.

curlew Tue 18-Jun-13 00:02:41

Could you point me to the hysterics?

Historically, that is a very charged word to use about women feeling strongly about anything!

KatyTheCleaningLady Tue 18-Jun-13 00:05:35

They hysterics are everywhere. Women, shrieking and moaning and generally being irrational because their uteri are out of order.

Now, calm down and don't get your knickers in a twist, girl.

FeegleFion Tue 18-Jun-13 00:08:32

You use it how you like Katy your opinion is fine.

disagree with you on a few points.

I'd rather be called a cunt than a bitch, my cunt isn't smelly and it's not at all ugly smile

And for me, the N word is not in my personal vocabulary for use.

curlew Tue 18-Jun-13 00:12:54

Katy, you are talking bullocks- you do realise that, don't you? grin

KatyTheCleaningLady Tue 18-Jun-13 00:13:51

Curlew, are you on your period or something? You seem really emotional.

KatyTheCleaningLady Tue 18-Jun-13 00:16:58

Feegle, I don't think I would care about being called a cunt vs. a bitch. They both mean "this person sure is upset with me and I hope they're not actually going to hit me with that spade."

I'm sure your cunt isn't any more smelly or ugly than any other cunt, and probably less smelly and ugly than many cunts. I just don't think they're sacred yoni flowers or whatever. Men seem to like them, which is good, since I rather like cock. I don't think they smell pretty and they're not really very nice to look at, objectively speaking, but I do like them.

I still call people "cocks" from time-to-time. Somehow, the words don't really seem to be directly connected to how I feel about actual genitals.

FeegleFion Tue 18-Jun-13 00:17:02

Does she? She seems very reasoned to me hmm

AmberLeaf Tue 18-Jun-13 00:17:43

The N word is way worse than Cunt! The two don't even compare.

I love Cunt [not like that] But I love the many and varied uses for just one word.

KatyTheCleaningLady Tue 18-Jun-13 00:18:30

Reasoned? Have you seen her try to reverse park, yet???

AmberLeaf Tue 18-Jun-13 00:19:31

Oh Katy...you did not just say that to curlew! shock

FTR my Cunt smells like honey. smile so Im told anyway.

FeegleFion Tue 18-Jun-13 00:20:35

I think you have some valid points but you're coming across quite, well, quite flaky.

FeegleFion Tue 18-Jun-13 00:22:49

Anyway, away to bed with me. Or at least, away to do the first night feed.

Goodnight.

prissyenglisharriviste Tue 18-Jun-13 00:25:35

I really really hate it when folk think they are being all clever and challengy and coming up with new things, when most people over the age of thirty are well past trying to reclaim the word cunt. I mean, most of us have read Chaucer and just ignore the folk that use it in a body misogynistic way. Even those of us that have been round Germaine Greer and written essays on blardy reclamation, blah blah blah.

But, y'know, if it's all new and exciting to you, do feel free to round the buoy again. I'll look out for the same thread a bit downstream.

And in case anybody cares (I know I don't) I don't use it myself, in any particular sense, neither negatively nor positively. I don't generally bring genitalia to everyday chat unless the subject is, well, genitalia. If you want me to write an essay on the historical use of any given word, sure, whatever. But as a perpetually interesting subject of infinite delight to the young ones? Don't really see it. Use it if you want? But discuss it endlessly? <wanders off bored>

curlew Tue 18-Jun-13 00:27:03

Always interesting when women try to out misogyn (my new word) men! It's as if they are jumping up and down chirruping "pick me, pick me, pick me!" in front of the Argyll and Sutherland Highlanders.

Anyway. Back to the debate........

KatyTheCleaningLady Tue 18-Jun-13 00:51:35

Curlew, what I was trying to do was be so preposterously ridiculous that you would REALIZE that I'm just joking around with you.

You asked me earlier where the hysteria is around the word "cunt" and then said something about my using the word "hysteria." I thought perhaps you thought I didn't know the origin of the word and so I said something silly about uteri and you seemed to take me utterly seriously and so I just kept going with it.

One of my strongest memories of Berkeley was a woman who was always very priggish and sanctimonious and seemed to live for the opportunity to tell people off for their "misogyny." She spelled woman as "womyn" in all sincerity. If someone said "Oh, that movie was hysterical!" she'd go into this long lecture and the only acceptable response was a humble, "I'm sorry... yes, of course what I just said was patriarchal and misogynistic... I didn't think before speaking and that was thoughtless of me." She annoyed the shit out of me and I'm still annoyed when I'm reminded of her, which is not your fault.

curlew Tue 18-Jun-13 00:57:21

Thank you for explaining-hmm

Still don't quite get your point - could you explain it again in simpler terms? I am only a woman after all - not suited to subtle arguments.

curlew Tue 18-Jun-13 01:00:19

Oh and congratulations for finding someone outside the right wing press who uses the spelling "womyn" in anger. 40 years at the feminist coal face and I've never come across it. Was she a member of S.C.U.M?

Futterby Tue 18-Jun-13 01:01:07

I quite like the word "cunt". It's quite commonly used where I'm from in Scotland grin in my experience, it's not usually used as an insult... more a piss-take between mates IYSWIM.

KatyTheCleaningLady Tue 18-Jun-13 01:02:07

There is no argument in my post.

KatyTheCleaningLady Tue 18-Jun-13 01:05:10

Curlew, I met a lot of people who used "womyn" sincerely. I also remember people saying "politically correct" as a desirable thing. Like, before it was scoffed at and before it became code for "those liberal beliefs that I think are silly but normal people consider basic decency" people in Berkeley actually said things like "It would be more politically correct to not choose sexual partners based on superficial things like race or gender."

KatyTheCleaningLady Tue 18-Jun-13 01:12:56

Also, people in Berkeley would riot over anything. There were riots over volleyball courts. Dozens of stores were looted and a woman was killed all because the university wanted to build a volleyball court.

So, really, spelling "woman" with a Y in anger wasn't a big deal at all.

WorraLiberty Tue 18-Jun-13 01:23:34

Oh and congratulations for finding someone outside the right wing press who uses the spelling "womyn" in anger.

I've never seen it spelled 'womyn' before but it's as fucking irritating as the word 'menz' which I've seen far too often on MN and it makes my eyes bleed a slow death.

curlew Tue 18-Jun-13 06:52:22

Wow, Katy, you most be even older than I am!

FeegleFion Tue 18-Jun-13 07:06:40

prissyenglish you were forced neither to read nor post here.

Bully, for you for reading Chaucer but so what?

I do consider myself "clever and challenging" but not for starting a thread discussing the word Cunt, funnily enough.

There is always debate about using the word on here, usually on threads that have developed into banter or gone off topic, somewhat, so why not start a thread to discuss it?

I believe, in fact, it is you who think you're clever and challenging for coming onto this thread to tell me you "hate it when folk" (like me) dare discuss something you have personally have no further interest in, due to having 'been there, done that'. confused

Your rant was moot as soon as you offered your opinion on this so 'hated' and 'beneath you' thread.

HTH

FeegleFion Tue 18-Jun-13 07:09:01

Futterby I, personally, do know exactly what you mean wink

Feeglefion,

Why do you find reading Chaucer remarkable? I'm genuinely confused.

Sheshelob Tue 18-Jun-13 08:01:34

Prissy's def went to Greenham, yo.

<stares dreamily into the middle distance>

When I grow up, I hope I'll be an uber feminist like you, prissy, where debate is no longer needed because I've seen and read it all.

<twiddles hair and subconsciously reinforces patriarchy>

Anyway, "cunt" isn't Welsh. It's Anglo-Saxon in origin, like "fuck".

And it has precisely zip all to do with yoni goddesses whatever they are. Less of the 'gina worship please. It is beyond hilarity, just as men who invented a religion based on worship of the Celestial Cock would be.

Sparklymommy Tue 18-Jun-13 08:17:56

I personally do not use the word, though I am not offended by those who do. I don't like a lot of the words, used as swear words, for genitalia. Male or female in origin. But they do not offend me.

FeegleFion Tue 18-Jun-13 08:26:48

Where exactly did I say reading Chaucer (or anything else for that matter) was remarkable Toad ? hmm

Please refrain from saying things like "less of the 'gina" worshipping.

SheShelob I too anticipate the day when I can be cantankerous and dispel any other woman's interest in discussing any issue she finds interesting...oh wait, no, no I don't.

I hope to offer some support and share my experiences in a non- Patriarchal 'type' approach wink

Honestly, what exactly is this thread doing that is pissing some of you so called feminists off?

mignonette Tue 18-Jun-13 08:27:35

God forbid we should stop discussing and debating because somebody, somewhere has been there and done that.......How fucking patronising and arrogant.....

FeegleFion Tue 18-Jun-13 08:37:43

Thanks for your input Sparkly it interests me when someone says it's not a word they use but it's inoffensive to them. As it is a word which usually evokes such a strong response.

FeegleFion Tue 18-Jun-13 08:39:07

Exactly, mignonette. I don't understand that type of reasoning.

Sheshelob Tue 18-Jun-13 08:44:34

We are mere padawan feminists, falling into the same traps our sage obi wan ke-yoni fems did before we were born.

<squints eyes and looks into distant past, where such conversations were allowed>

smile

mignonette Tue 18-Jun-13 08:46:08

One of the reasons I enjoy being in nurse education (I mentor young students) is seeing students becoming aware of feminism and it's history. The same when I did a history degree for pleasure. It is lovely to hear young women and men looking at their own lives and experiences in the light of new things they have learned.

Yes, I've heard a lot of the debates and points of discussion many a time. Yes, I've had experiences they are yet to have. But to shut a debate down because of that? To use my experiences to belittle and patronise?

Ugh

Sheshelob Tue 18-Jun-13 08:52:35

Exactly, mignonette.

Who knows - we might even get somewhere this time. It is all part of the process, part of which is about accepting that things change down the generations. It doesn't mean we are lesser fems.

Unless there was a feminist assault course that I missed out on, where I could earn my feminist stripes.

I'd fail, obviously, not wanting to mess up my lovely hair and stuff...

THERhubarb Tue 18-Jun-13 08:54:49

This thread is now officially depressing.

Women are slagging off other women all because of the word 'cunt', as if there aren't more important things to get our knickers in a twist about. And am I the only one who finds it just so bloody depressing when women start to use feminism against each other in some kind of point scoring exercise?

I had no idea that being a feminist was considered so insulting that the word feminism is now being bandied about as an insult.

I don't give a shit how old you all are, who read what, where you come from, what fucking march you went on or how educated you think you are, when a thread disintegrates into personal slagging off then most of those posters have lost all credibility.

This passive aggressive shit is tedious.

Shame because it could have been a good debate about the usage of the word cunt. Pity so many women have used it as an opportunity to turn against each other.

Pagwatch Tue 18-Jun-13 08:56:48

I decided in the 70s that platforms were ridiculous but walked through Topshop yesterday and there they all are again.
It's almost as if my experience and choice hasn't defined footwear.

You crazy kids <shakes head>

curlew Tue 18-Jun-13 08:58:14

I think there is another serious point here. Battles don't stay won. And while there has obviously been significant legislative change in my lifetime (sorry- is that playing the "crone" card? grin) it seems to me that attitudinal change is glacially slow. And if we aren't vigilant, it will start going backwards. So while reclaiming the word "cunt" might seem trivial, we have to be very careful that we don't forget our history. Younger women (sorry, crone card again) have no idea of the levels of misogyny and viciousness that once surrounded the word. And no, dick and cock do not have the same resonance- it seems to me to be disingenuous to say they are at all comparable. "Cock sucker" and "Mother fucker" maybe once did- but these expressions described actions, rather than simply a body part.

Pagwatch Tue 18-Jun-13 08:59:26

<goes for a lie down>

FeegleFion Tue 18-Jun-13 08:59:53

Actually, I'm a mentor too. I work to try to help women (and men) empower themselves.

I am the first to admit I'm not a hardcore feminist, but that's because I'm still learning.

What is wrong with learning and refreshing?

curlew Tue 18-Jun-13 09:02:47

"This thread is now officially depressing."

This thread is now officially confusing. Could somebody please tell me why people are getting upset? I don't understand!

mrsjay Tue 18-Jun-13 09:03:42

I had no idea that being a feminist was considered so insulting that the word feminism is now being bandied about as an insult.

maybe feminism will start replacing the word cunt wink

FeegleFion Tue 18-Jun-13 09:04:06

I agree THERhubarb I'm really quite sad at how this is going.

Who needs men to oppress women when the very women I should be looking to for guidance are doing it for them?

FeegleFion Tue 18-Jun-13 09:07:26

curlew
"I think there is another serious point here. Battles don't stay won. And while there has obviously been significant legislative change in my lifetime (sorry- is that playing the "crone" card? ) it seems to me that attitudinal change is glacially slow. And if we aren't vigilant, it will start going backwards. So while reclaiming the word "cunt" might seem trivial, we have to be very careful that we don't forget our history. Younger women (sorry, crone card again) have no idea of the levels of misogyny and viciousness that once surrounded the word. And no, dick and cock do not have the same resonance- it seems to me to be disingenuous to say they are at all comparable. "Cock sucker" and "Mother fucker" maybe once did- but these expressions described actions, rather than simply a body part"

An excellent post, thank you curlew

FeegleFion Tue 18-Jun-13 09:08:06

mrsjay grin

THERhubarb Tue 18-Jun-13 09:08:33

curlew I have just read it all from where I left last night. Fighting over who knows the origins of the word 'cunt', over who has read Chaucer and who hasn't, who went to which feminism march, who makes a better feminist, the spelling of the word 'woman versus womyn'.

I can smell the bullshit from here of a small group of woman who are trying to score points above each other.

It's a shame like I say because inbetween there are some good points made by posters like yourself, but those good points are lost in the in-fighting amongst other posters.

When women argue about who makes the better feminist, part of me wants to stick two fingers up at feminism and flounce off.

Pagwatch Tue 18-Jun-13 09:09:12

I was enjoying the thread tbh.

I use cunt. I think using it in many ways diminishes its power. And I am fucking old so I do have context.

But I like listening to the thoughts of others, especially when expressed with wit and vigour and intelligence and that is often the case on MN and certainly has been in evidence here.
I am always open to changing my mind, reassessing my views.

'urgh, it's vile. You are dim and don't get it' doesn't really do that.

FeegleFion Tue 18-Jun-13 09:10:04

Pagwatch
"I decided in the 70s that platforms were ridiculous but walked through Topshop yesterday and there they all are again.
It's almost as if my experience and choice hasn't defined footwear."

"You crazy kids <shakes head>"

grin How very dare TS go against your decision Pag Brilliant! wink

mrsjay Tue 18-Jun-13 09:12:46

Actually the whole competitive feminism on this site really gets on my wick I never ever join in on discussions about it, feminism is for all it shouldnt be put into little boxes and teams

FeegleFion Tue 18-Jun-13 09:15:25

Actually, I've reassessed my views.

There are some great posters here, with excellent information and experience to offer.

We don't all agree on the use of the word Cunt but the posts are enjoyable and informative and exactly what I was hoping for when I started this thread.

WorraLiberty Tue 18-Jun-13 09:17:28

Morning you bunch of cunts grin brew

I must say it's an interesting thread.

The Chaucer argument was a bit random though

curlew Tue 18-Jun-13 09:17:29

But there have always been women who are scared of feminism and try to derail it by squabbling at the margins. The real debate is hard and challenging and makes the world shift beneath your feet. I don't blame people who don't want to engage with it. The truth is that women have a lot to lose by fighting for equality. They have more to gain- but sometimes it's hard to see beyond the short term loss.

THERhubarb Tue 18-Jun-13 09:18:02

mrsjay yes that.

Pagwatch and that. Posters who come onto a thread, say their bit about how vile it all this and then announce they are going to hide it????

I don't want my vag used as an insult. Men seem to embrace the usage of their genitals as insults, in fact they seem rather proud of it. My vag is more than just somewhere to shove a dick, it gave birth to two beautiful children and was badly torn in the process. I take great offence at someone using a derogative term for it and turning it into an insult.

So if you want to reclaim the word cunt then go ahead. But if someone calls me a cunt I might just have to give them a Glaswegian kiss (since they also seen to be fond of this particular endearment in Glasgow too) smile

mrsjay Tue 18-Jun-13 09:19:50

I might just have to give them a Glaswegian kiss (since they also seen to be fond of this particular endearment in Glasgow too)

usually went hand in hand with YA CUNT

FeegleFion Tue 18-Jun-13 09:22:35

Worra Ye awright ya good wee cunt ye? Is that brew going spare? grin

It's not going exactly how I'd hoped, however, that is of course the beauty of starting a thread on MN wink

FeegleFion Tue 18-Jun-13 09:25:12

mrsjay
"I might just have to give them a Glaswegian kiss (since they also seen to be fond of this particular endearment in Glasgow too)"

"usually went hand in hand with YA CUNT"

Only if you weren't a good wee Cunt mrsjay grin

To clarify, I have never proffered anybody a 'malky' (AKA Glesga kiss). wink

THERhubarb Tue 18-Jun-13 09:32:54

Look 'ere our kid, stop cocking about or I'll break yer legs. grin

I think you have kind of just proved that the word 'cunt' is not only used in an abusive setting but also in an aggressive setting. That it is also used in a lighthearted context in Scotland is not surprising as that's just their sense of humour, it's an aggressive humour (we have it up North too) but in my eyes, that doesn't necessarily make the vocabularly right.

My vagina is not aggressive, it is not violent, it is not ugly or debasing or insulting. Everyone has come out of a vagina and perhaps that is why men use it as such a misogynistic insult, it's partly denial that they were ever born from a vagina. To them it has become hateful, an organ that they feel the need to abuse and ridicule.

I don't really want to be a part of that. I don't think the word will ever be reclaimed. All that will happen is that men will feel more justified in using it as their hateful insults.

THERhubarb Tue 18-Jun-13 09:33:32

(yes, I realise I put an extra letter in vocabulary)

Sheshelob Tue 18-Jun-13 09:49:29

Are the 'passive aggressive' comments aimed at me?

I wasn't meaning to derail the thread, with my Star Wars analogy, nor split hairs. But I also won't be popped on anyone's knee and told the Story of Womyn, like I don't know it. It got my goat, so I mocked it.

I am a feminist and am proud to be one. I also use the word cunt in my every day language, though never in reference to my vagina.

Cunt is not hate speech, so I see no problem with using it.

OhTiger Tue 18-Jun-13 09:55:21

Thoroughly enjoyed reading this debate.

I use the word frequently, but only among close friends.

My biggest worry is, that if it is anti-feminist to use it, what the fuck will I call my ex husband? The only satisfying way to describe him is as 'a massive cunt'. It's nice and clear for everyone, and no other word does it as well.

THERhubarb Tue 18-Jun-13 09:58:55

That's precisely what I mean.

The word cunt is primarily used as the worst insult you can think of, saved up for particularly nasty specimens of humanity. It's worse than calling someone a dick, a prick or a cock.

Does it not make you wonder why a woman's genitalia should be used as the worst insult used to describe the lowest scum? Is that not the opposite of what feminism is about?

FeegleFion Tue 18-Jun-13 10:07:15

THERhubarb That's an excellent point.

I, agree, that the Scottish sense of humour (specifically, Glaswegian, as I can't attest to know about SOH of any other region) is aggressive.

In fact, the colloquialism that I've grown up with, could justifiably be described as aggressive but we are a very friendly bunch and (for the most part) mean no offence.

Growing up, I used words and phrases that I had no idea had such negative connotations for many.

Maybe this explains why, for me, now that I do know the origins of Cunt, I find it inoffensive and a word that I think should be used by women more (though not to insult) as I believe, the more we use it, the less power it has to be used to offend.

propertyNIGHTmareBEFOREXMAS Tue 18-Jun-13 10:09:16

I like the word. I think it has been reclaimed. You fucking cunt is not derogatory to the act of fucking itself or abusive to fanjos. You cow isn't really offensive to cows, etc.

FeegleFion Tue 18-Jun-13 10:10:01

SheShelob I personally think your retorts have been witty.

For me, there are posters who are offering reasoned argument, to explain why the word is off limits for them and it's the posters who won't accept that we can and will continue to discuss and debate such issues that are aggressive.

curlew Tue 18-Jun-13 10:12:27

"Cunt is not hate speech, so I see no problem with using it."

But do you acknowledge that other people do, and why they do?

FeegleFion Tue 18-Jun-13 10:15:33

And I fully agree, that to reclaim the word, it should not be used in context to describe people who are least favourable to us.

Whenever my DP uses any of the 'cunt' 'twat' etc insults toward someone, I normally say something along the lines of "but a cunt is beautiful, warm and accommodating, don't you mean penis" grin

propertyNIGHTmareBEFOREXMAS Tue 18-Jun-13 10:15:50

I'll use the word cunt quite factually too. So I might say to dh, 'God, my cunt is sore' after giving birth. If you use the work cunt as a descriptive or naming term it reclaims the word. A cow is first and foremost the name of an animal. The term can be used as a term to insult someone. I feel the sane way about cunt as a word. It is not inherently offensive to me.

THERhubarb Tue 18-Jun-13 10:15:54

But Feegle, I grew up using the words "coloured", "half-caste", "backwards", "mentally disabled" and "retarded". Those words were used all the time in general conversation and I had no idea that they would be considered offensive.

I now know the origins of those words and I have heard them being used as derogatory insults of the worst kind, designed to have maximum impact upon their victim. In other words, I was educated as to their real meaning and so I stopped using the words.

My background does not excuse my behaviour.

I do not think you can reclaim the word. As stated with the argument over the word "nigger". It has not been successfully reclaimed by the black community despite many attempts because half the black community still associate the word with oppression and violence and so refuse to use it. Also, no-one in the white community would ever dare to utter it.

Same with cunt. You would get some women who would voraciously defend their right to use it but others would only associate the word with aggression and misogynistic oppression and so would refuse to associate themselves with it. Those men who have more sense, would be too afraid to use it for fear of upsetting women and being labelled as sexists.

I'm afraid it can never be reclaimed and maybe that's a good thing. Phonetically speaking it's quite a gutteral sounding word, quite germanic really and not at all pleasant sounding.

Sheshelob Tue 18-Jun-13 10:16:32

I agree property. It has lost it's power as hate speech, which I understand it used to have.

If someone daubed "cunt" on the side of my house, I wouldn't assume it was specifically aimed at me as a woman."Whore" or "Slut" would cut deeper, as there would be no doubt that, as the only woman in my household, it was aggressively aimed at me.

The way I see it, cunt is as unisex as arsehole, just a step up. Slut and whore are far more pernicious.

Sheshelob Tue 18-Jun-13 10:18:39

*Its

THERhubarb Tue 18-Jun-13 10:19:20

property yes, I think the only way you can reclaim a word is to start using it in its literal meaning. If you continue to use it as an insult then you are simply not reclaiming it but encouraging the misogynistic attitude that women's genitalia are so horrendous that words used to describe them are insulting.

If you use the word cunt in a factual context you have half a chance.

curlew Tue 18-Jun-13 10:24:59

Agree, rhubarb.

FeegleFion Tue 18-Jun-13 10:25:03

I'm really not using my background to excuse the use of the word cunt. However, for me, it's not the same as using any of the names to describe people of colour.

Maybe it's because I have a cunt, that I feel I am within my rights to use it.

It is a word (I think I mentioned up thread? Not sure) that in Glasgow I would expect someone to use as a greeting only for close friends/ family. Not with the general populace.

FeegleFion Tue 18-Jun-13 10:28:10

And I totally agree with using it factually. grin

I agree, also, that being called a whore or slut would affect me much more.

THERhubarb Tue 18-Jun-13 10:31:56

Those black people who tried to reclaim the word nigger would say that they have a right to use it as they are black. Some black people disagreed with them and plenty of white people knew damn well that they were NOT entitled to use the word in any context whatsoever.

I use the word 'dick' and 'cock' even though I don't have one.

Look, I think if you use it in your own cultural context, or as an in-joke then fine. However I don't agree with its liberal usage because not everyone gets the joke, not everyone feels the same way and not everyone wants to be on the receiving end of a gender-based insult.

I said earlier that I wouldn't use the word 'cock' as a term of endearment of anyone who is not familiar with the context. Same here.

mrsjay Tue 18-Jun-13 10:32:12

Only if you weren't a good wee Cunt mrsjay

oh yes My dad often said aye he is an awright wee cunt hmm

I wonder when the words like you said feegle will be reclaimed as ok to say to or about another woman whore slut or a new word Skank when will that become ok cos I dont think it will,

Sheshelob Tue 18-Jun-13 10:37:35

I respect your view, Rhubarb, but I disagree. I think there is a linguistic difference, isn't there, between a slur (racial, misogynistic, homophobic) and crude slang? Cunt falls into slang for me, especially in its use in the UK. In the US, it is way more gender-targeted, but not here.

I guess fundamentally I don't like the idea that there is a swear word I am not allowed to use if I am going to be an 'informed' feminist. The guttural sound is what makes it the perfect swear word - like cock or prick or fuck. Harsh consonants to emphasise the point.

Doesn't this just come down to whether you like swearing or not?

BusinessOfFerrets Tue 18-Jun-13 10:43:32

This abhorrent misogynistic slur is not used on mumsnet for reclamation purposes whatsoever: it is used merely to attention-seek (nearly always by the 'hip' feminists).

FeegleFion Tue 18-Jun-13 10:46:45

I respect your stance, fully, THERhubarb

BusinessOfFerrets Tue 18-Jun-13 10:47:12

I believe there are never any stupid questions. I obviously don't object to the word, so can't answer your question. Hopefully, one of the posters who do object to it, will be kind enough to answer your question.

Rather disingenous of you there, Feegle, but I'll try to answer: men have never historically been oppressed by being called a dick or a knob or a shaft or a scrotum or the myriad other variances of a penis.

FeegleFion Tue 18-Jun-13 10:47:55

Excellent post Shelob

FeegleFion Tue 18-Jun-13 10:48:58

Business please explain what part of that was disingenuous?

THERhubarb Tue 18-Jun-13 10:49:06

Perhaps Sheshelob? Although I do enjoy swearing as a pastime and there is nothing better than lobbing a quick 'fuck' at someone down here in the south as the way they say it is just far too polite grin

I understand where you are coming from but actually I think it boils down to how happy you are to use your own genitalia as a swear word. I'm not that comfortable with it personally.

Cock or dick or prick are words used liberally by both men and women and I never hear a man complaining about the fact that his genitals have become a swear word. It just doesn't bother men at all, which is why perhaps those swear words don't have the same impact as 'cunt'.

A woman's genitalia, as Feegle pointed out, was regarded as sacred. Ours is an open passage into our bodies and it's where new life is both created and born. To suddenly use a descriptive word for vagina as a swear word is to debase it, snatch away its mysticism and reduce it to a mere insult.

Unlike the men, I am bothered about my genitals being used as an insult. There are far too many gender-based insults targeted at women and this is just one of many.

THERhubarb Tue 18-Jun-13 10:50:35

Feegle, it's lovely of you to respect my stance but all this politeness is putting me on edge somewhat. I'm more used to being sworn at tbh.

You can tell me to fuck off you know? grin

BusinessOfFerrets Tue 18-Jun-13 10:50:49

...pretending you didn't understand why the use of words to describe a penis as insults are not similarly oppressive or degrading as 'cunt'.

FeegleFion Tue 18-Jun-13 10:53:53

Firstly, how do you know what I know or don't know?

Secondly, it was not my place to explain the views of those in opposition to my argument.

How do I know the intricacies and subtleties of that argument? How could I explain it?

FeegleFion Tue 18-Jun-13 10:57:27

I'm not going to tell you to fuck off when it's so fucking (got it in wink) refreshing to have a reasoned argument.

I'm always willing to learn and I have learned a lot from this thread, from both sides of the argument.

I am open to having my opinion changed. It's all about growing and nurturing my understanding.

BusinessOfFerrets Tue 18-Jun-13 10:59:58

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BusinessOfFerrets Tue 18-Jun-13 11:02:45

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Sheshelob Tue 18-Jun-13 11:03:59

Hip feminists?

Are we, as feminists, supposed to be dour, serious folk who never drawn attention to ourselves?

Sounds awfully patriarchal, that.

FeegleFion Tue 18-Jun-13 11:04:00

Really? I have 'stolen' an idea for a thread? hmm

And I'm not interested in discussing this topic, only looking for attention because that's just me?

Really? How boring.

THERhubarb Tue 18-Jun-13 11:06:27

Business "another attempt by feminists to be able to get even more aggressive and imperious on mumsnet than they already are".

No sweeping statements there then eh? You start by rounding on Feegle for being attention-seeking then end to condemn ALL feminists?

Please do demonstrate where ALL feminists have been aggressive and imperious on this thread and do feel free to include me as I am also a feminist and proud of it thanks very much.

Sheshelob Tue 18-Jun-13 11:06:35

Oh. Am slow.

Business - lay it out for me. Where do you stand on this? And try to say it without being aggressive.

BusinessOfFerrets Tue 18-Jun-13 11:06:41

...and while we are on the subject, why this blind insistence that a 'cunt' is a beautiful thing? Really? Aesthetically?

'Cos my vagina ain't that purdy. My tits, on the other hand, are fucking beautiful grin

FeegleFion Tue 18-Jun-13 11:07:30

That's twice in two days I've been called nauseating for my beliefs, I'm going to get a complex grin

Disingenuous? Again, how is anything I'm posting here disingenuous? You know nothing about me, so please don't assume to comment on my character.

I think your posts say a lot more about your character than mine.

THERhubarb Tue 18-Jun-13 11:07:33

Erm, business Feegle directed that comment to me actually, but thanks for feeling nauseated on my behalf.

Shut the door on your way out please.

Sheshelob Tue 18-Jun-13 11:07:47

<trotting around on feminist high horse, NOT riding side saddle, trying to look hip>

BusinessOfFerrets Tue 18-Jun-13 11:08:30

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Sheshelob Tue 18-Jun-13 11:09:48

No. That was Passive Aggressive. You are multi-talented.

Joking aside, what's your beef?

BusinessOfFerrets Tue 18-Jun-13 11:10:52

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curlew Tue 18-Jun-13 11:11:14

Oh, god, I really don't understand now!

We now have somebody simultaneously saying that using "cunt" as an insult is misogynist and shouldn't be done and that feminists are aggressive and attentions seeking.

BusinessOfFerrets Tue 18-Jun-13 11:12:42

...I'm about to get on a plane from Prague after having had donor egg IVF. I will rejoin you lovelies in a few hours smile

Sheshelob Tue 18-Jun-13 11:12:51

Um, I wasn't part of any triumvirate. Except the holy one.

Business - did a feminist steal your sweets?

Sheshelob Tue 18-Jun-13 11:13:28

I AM delightful, though.

BusinessOfFerrets Tue 18-Jun-13 11:14:14

Did I say 'ALL' feminists? Nope. Please read more carefully. Bye for now.

FeegleFion Tue 18-Jun-13 11:16:36

You obviously know me well. Is that where you 'stole' nauseating from? And the Triumvirate? Did you need to google that?

And the thread you are referring to my stealing the idea for this thread from wasn't actually a Nigella thread.

The only attention seeker here is <looks around> you! grin

Oh and I'm pretty sure you can leave Shelob out of your attacks.

HTH

curlew Tue 18-Jun-13 11:16:48

<looks at Triumvirate. Feels left out. Is it because I is a Crone?>

FeegleFion Tue 18-Jun-13 11:19:41

I really don't understand why anyone thinks I'd be offended by that description. confused

Sheshelob Tue 18-Jun-13 11:28:41

You can have my spot in the triumvirate, curlew. I iz busy riding my high horse.

<attempts some showy trotting>

A woman attacking feminists and then talking about her lovely tits in a thread is the funniest shit I have ever read.

Forget cunts - boob obsession completely mystifies me.

FeegleFion Tue 18-Jun-13 11:37:30

I know most of you weren't privileged enough to bear witness to MurderOfCrows delightful musings and personal attacks aimed at me, but...

...BusinessOfFerrets ? hmm

Personal attacks, aimed at me? hmm

Using exact phrases to attack me (nauseating and Triumvirate)?

Is it only me who thinks this is too much of a coincidence to be coincidental?

Sheshelob Tue 18-Jun-13 11:44:53

That would make sense because the only comment I made on that thread was to nod at MoC, up to her old tricks again.

Curiouser and curiouser...

<fashions sock into puppet, while artfully mistreating her feminist horse>

FeegleFion Tue 18-Jun-13 11:49:03

I feel quite 'honoured' in a weird sort of way...confused

No idea what I've done that was so exceptional to merit this but I've obviously hit a nerve.

Sheshelob Tue 18-Jun-13 11:51:21

<eyes Feegle suspiciously>

Are YOU the sweet-stealing feminist?

<twists moustache a la Poirot>

FeegleFion Tue 18-Jun-13 11:52:29

I do love haribo shock

KatyTheCleaningLady Tue 18-Jun-13 12:53:27

Feegle, lots of African Americans call one another "nigger" in an affectionate way. It in no way dispels the ugliness of the word, and only confuses stupid white people, who wonder why they can't use it, either.

FeegleFion Tue 18-Jun-13 13:03:42

Katy I am not African American (or , in fact, any BME group).

I am White British, therefore, the word is not in my personal vocabulary, for use, however, I am we'll aware that it is used by some people of colour. grin

THERhubarb Tue 18-Jun-13 13:21:47

Did I miss summat?

Just finished researching Habbo Hotel for an article on internet safety. It ain't pretty. It makes you despair that there are so many paedos and creeps out there.

THERhubarb Tue 18-Jun-13 13:23:36

Feegle - you have truly been embraced in the bosom of Mumsnet!

You know you've arrived when someone goes to the effort of stalking you. Abusive PM are also fun.

FeegleFion Tue 18-Jun-13 13:51:38

Oh THERhubarb I'm now going to have to investigate Habbo Hotel.

I just feel sad that we had a good bit of back and forth going for a bit before we were interrupted. confused

THERhubarb Tue 18-Jun-13 13:57:13

Feegle, just read my blog when it's published smile

FeegleFion Tue 18-Jun-13 14:01:09

Ooh, yeas, I will do! When?

THERhubarb Tue 18-Jun-13 14:07:12

Dunno yet, still writing it and hope to send it off today. Will PM you when it's published.

Don't ever let your children join any kind of chat room, no matter how "safe" they say it is. There is no such thing. Here's what I discovered about MovieStarPlanet

I can think of much worse things than being called a "cunt".

Such as "having no sense of humour".

curlew Tue 18-Jun-13 20:20:37

"I can think of much worse things than being called a "cunt".

Such as "having no sense of humour"."

Or "completely missing the point"?

I can't say I mind that. Bloody-mindedness is too common to be offensive.

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