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Vebal Agression You Say? For Real.

Some time last year I picked up a giant box of books, magazines, and various pamphlets and such. It was posted on my local Freecycle. I joined Freecycle to keep an eye out for books. What can I say? I'm a book junky. And, it's exciting because you never know what crazy stuff you're going to get. And I've picked up some weird stuff, let me tell ya.

So this morning I'm getting my coffee. I'm very much not awake.

My fiance says, "did you know you have a book of cuss words, of verbal aggression?"

I turn, spoon clutched in hand. He's interrupting my daily, required sacrifice of coffee beans and speaking some kind of babble, right? Did he just say... "Wha?"

"Verbal aggression. That yellow book down there."

I look "down there" at the box that was recently dragged out of my daughter's new room (once storage) and placed beside the back door. Said yellow book is in my box of books that need to go away. I don't reply because I'm still lost. I certainly don't recall owning any books on verbal aggression. Wouldn't I remember something as cool as that?

"You should keep it, for your writing at least." He grabs up the book, shows it to me, and reads the title. "Maledicta: The International Journal of Verbal Aggression."

I recognize the book now. It was from that box of crazy, crazy stuff and for some reason I never gave the book much consideration because it looked weird when I flipped open to a random page.

A random excerpt from MALEDICTA:

"Restrictions on the set of dirty words. In conducting research with dirty words the experimenter should be careful not to constrain subjects' responses."

Now, if I had read further or flipped a few pages, I would have seen what a jewel this is. I might have discovered "Table 1" of the section "Doing Research with Dirty Words," which details the "Frequency and Tabooness Ratings for Dirty Words." Did you know women use the word ass quite a bit more frequently than men? I wonder why...

Total. Riot. It's a journal that was published annually in two parts (eh, wouldn't that be biannually?). This edition was published Winter 1977 - their second volume. It even has a section called "Aggression in Children's Jokes." How cool is that? Let me add, I'm not one to use "verbal aggression" but it's fascinating and I certainly might take something away for my novel. You never know.

So after geeking out over it this morning, I Googled it. The last volume came out in 2004 but you can still order them all here. You can also see some excerpts from Volume 12 here. I SO want the most recent volume. And it just gets better. There was a five-year period it didn't print because the editor was in prison. Oh man. Who is this guy?

6 comments:

  1. It sounds perfect! Okay, maybe use sparingly for kid's books, but still a great, great resource!

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  2. Wow--I've never heard anything even remotely like that before.

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  3. hahahaha!!! I wonder what he'd say about my writing! *snort*

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  4. Ya'll crack me up.

    I can't wait to read the whole thing. I might have more stories to share. :p

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