Something I love whenever I come across it in Young Adult books is swearing. The main reason is that for some reason proper adult like people seem to think that teenagers don't know swear words. Oh, trust me they know swears and in fact they probably know far ruder things than you. Also this knowledge doesn't magically appear in their head when they turn 13 either. I've probably known swears since I was able to keep secrets. I've also known that I wasn't meant to say them in front of adults.
Most YA novels tend to have what I call a School Vocabulary. The sort of
language you would use when in fear of being overheard by a teacher/adult that
would give you in trouble for swearing; or stuff that you just don't want adult
to hear because you know "ADULTS".
There is a want to keep kids innocent long as after they've been exposed. If
anything this is going have negative effects more than good ones. Books are safe
places where difficult subjects can be attacked. But to be honest this post
isn't about how its important that your kids learn about issues that will most
likely come across in the real world. No, this is frankly just my want for there
to be swear words in YA because it would be far more realistic than a character
who uses alternative swears.
I'm not saying all YA books should have swear words in them because people
don't just go spurting swears everywhere you go. Swear words have their places
in real life and they should have that place in the fictional place as well.
Young teens probably swear more than adults do. Fuck is one of my favourite
words and I will admit that at the age of thirteen I over-used that word. Yes,
I could use 'really' or 'very' instead of 'fucking' but it wouldn't be as strong.
'I really love that' is not the same as 'I fucking love that’. It is the
extreme and sometimes the extreme is called for. Say for perhaps when you
running from a demon.
I know even with adult books swear words are sometimes frown upon. I have
the same argument. The extreme is sometimes needed. People swear. Everyone
swears. I'm not saying all books should have swear words in them, but when the situation
the character has found themselves in calls for it.
Frankly, if your biggest concern is that your kid reads a cruse word then you
should probably reassess your priorities. Hell, maybe your thirteen year old
might even stop swearing so much if weren't such a big deal. Maybe YA books are
way to teach them when it's appropriate to swear.
I'm not campaigning for the C word here. Just the F,Ss, As and Bs (not so
much that last one). I could actually argue that shit or shite is not even a
real swear world. Is Crap considered a swear word? There is also no real
non-swear word alternative ('Darn' totally does not count. It is a swear word
but it is an annoying one). If you drop something on your foot, you either
swear or grunt in pain. Its swear or say nothing, when something goes wrong.
Someone would say that you should just say nothing but that's unhealthy. You
need to let your emotions out.
My point is that I swore when I was eight and I swear when I'm Eighty. I
wouldn't have a strange love for YA books with swear words in them if it was
the norm. You'll accept death, heart-ache, life in endangerment of a favourite
character but not the vocabulary that goes with them. Don't you think that's
I think the reason that swear words are generally frown upon is that they
have usually have sexual contention or are sometimes to describe sexual things.
Sex is another taboo in YA and society in general. Human beings for some reason
to do not like to be remind that we are actually animals, which is also why
other bodily function are consider bad things to bring up in a way as well.
We're accept fictional violence a lot easier for some reason.
The one reason I decided to write this post because there has been some controversy
to do with a book called "When the Dogs Bites" by Brian Conaghan,
which is about a boy with Tourettes. If any situation called for swearing, it
would be that one. People with Tourettes cannot always decide what they say and
do. This could also lead us into should YA novels have warnings on them. Bitch,
they already do. Lots of them will say on the back not for Young Readers.
Others explain more why. It already thing and proper ratings would lead to
You will be able to find reviews that will tell how "mature" a
book is. The summary will give you good idea as well.
Got sort off topic. Should YA have Swearing or "Profanity" in them?
Sometimes. More often than they actually do at the moment.
Good Days Sirs and Madames. Good Day. See you next week.