You can tell a lot about a culture
from its choice of swear words
The logic is simple. If you’re going to curse at something, it had better be dear to get that personal impact. What would cursing at someone’s eraser or soup bowl or towel and such do? You curse something like their church (Quebec French and some other languages) or their Mother (Vietnamese, among other languages I’m sure).
In fact, it had not just better be dear, whatever it is people of a culture choose to swear at, but probably among the dearest thing to them, if not the dearest. The logic can easily be extended why would you curse at something second dearest to a culture when you can curse at the dearest thing to them? Well, situation for one, but the general logic probably holds well.
I can’t recall a lot of swear words off the top of my head, but I can tell you in English it is sex (the F word). In Vietnamese, it is the Mothers. I often tell people that for the Vietnamese, you can curse our Dads or Brothers and we’d not be happy. If you cursed our Sisters, we’d be angry. But if you cursed our Mothers, well, our fists and your mouth need to have a little chat! lol
This is true about cursing our Mothers despite the society being very patriarchal in appearance. You see, that’s just it. It’s all appearance! Everybody knows who runs the family in Vietnamese society. You can run the whole country as a man for all we care. When you go home, someone else is running the house and you put up and shut up there, lol.
In Quebec French, it’s the Church.
Care to give me more examples?