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(on the word “fuck”)’Oh, come on, Mum,’ I sighed at her protest. ‘It’s just an old Anglo-Saxon word for the female organ which has been adopted by an inherently misogynist language as a negative epithet. It’s the same as “fuck”, it basically means the same as copulate, but the latter is perfectly acceptable. Why? Because copulate has its roots in Latin and Latin reminds us that we are a sophisticated, learned species, not the rutting animals that these prehistoric grunts would have us appear to be, and isn’t that really the issue here? We don’t want to admit that we are essentially animals? We want to distinguish ourselves from the fauna with grand conceits and elaborate language; become angels worthy of salvation, not dumb creatures consigned to an earthly, terminal end. It’s just a word, Mum; a sound meaning a thing; and your disgust is just denial of a greater horror: that our consciousness is not an indication of our specialness but the terrifying key to knowing how truly insignificant we are.’She told me to got fuck myself.

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