Wednesday, 24 January 2018 03:32 GMT

Jordan- Profanity and Foul DictionBy Mohammad Aburumman

(MENAFN - Alghad Newspaper)

A report published by the 'Arabi Jadeed newspaper titled 'Foul Diction That Dominates the Algerian Society, roughly translated from Arabic, talks about the spread of foul language across segments of their society, which has become a social nuisance that disturbs family setting in the public space, the streets, markets, and parks.

The report cites stories on fights and problems caused by the spread of the phenomenon. Incidents of the sort are indeed embarrassing for families; when in a situation, the parent either has to shut the obnoxious lot up, which may typically end in dispute and fighting, or he and the rest would have to hold their tongues, in order to avoid conflict with this unsettled sort of youth.

Now, generally, the phenomena of loud foul language is not exclusive to Algeria today. It is quite common in many Arab societies, noticeably, across the region. More so, anyone who follows circulating videos on the wars and internal confrontations in Syria would be shocked by the scale of profanity used by personnel of the Army and their affiliated militias, and even some of the videos from Iraq; as if murder, torture, and indignation is not enough, hence, the use of profanity and abusive language to further break and humiliate victims!

In Jordan, just as well, you can see the use of profanity trending, in addition to all reflective and related shifts in society.

It is possible nowadays to hear people cursing and swearing loudly in the streets and even public places at times. Still, this phenomenon is still being resisted and highly rejected in the social culture, more or less.

Expectedly, some would say that these words and profanities are not new to our society, but are rather 'indigenous. The sort of this language, some say, can be traced back through literature in reference to explicit and sexual concepts and words, and that is neither true nor accurate. The sort of diction in Arab literature is utterly different from the kind of profanity commonly used!

Yes; literature does address and engage the spheres of sexual cultures. And there are books with jokes as well as religious literatures that address these topics. But this is not what we are talking about here, at all. What is meant in this context is the 'culture of using profanity as insult and the spread of this demeanour recently, inclusive of the indications this carries in regards to the social culture!

The spread of profanity, in this discourse, and its timing along the spread of civil conflict in the Arab world, coupled with a vastly shared sense of frustration among youth, and apathy, all indicate the disintegration of 'moral authority and the ethical constructs that govern our society and the relations between people and individuals; the devaluation of concepts like respect, for example, which explains why it has become easy for one to insult others. This also says a lot about bottled negativity, against society and its general culture.

Language is more than just a means of communication and expression. Language reflects the cultural and ethical status, as well as the general morale and mood of society; it is a vital criteria to measuring the sophistication of society and its level of progress and regression. Hence, the more we invest in resisting the spread of these phenomena in society, and reinforce its rejection, the more it manifests persistence on social inclusion and consolidation, which projects our determination to safeguard our morality and reinforce its authority unto society.

Either way, all paths lead to Rome; curriculums. It is now, more than ever, crucial to integrate ethics and conduct in Arabic language books across different education phases, in order to advance awareness of this issue, so that our youth may totally reject this phenom and cast it out.

This article is an edited translation from the original Arabic version

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