I do solemly swear…

Swearing is a transgression of taboo and is inherently bad, right? Maybe not. At least not always. Today the BBC ran this article on swearing which promotes its very NSFWOAE (not safe for work or anywhere else) Radio 4 broadcast Philosophers Arms on swearing
The article discusses some interesing studies on bad language:

The emotional release from swearing has been measured in a variety of ways. It turns out that swearing helps mitigate pain. It is easier to keep an arm in ice-cold-water for longer if you are simultaneously effing and blinding. And those who speak more than one language, report that swearing in their first language is more satisfying, carrying, as it does, a bigger emotional punch.

Add to this the research that suggests that people who swear a lot tend to be more honest and we have a new perspective on blue language. Maybe it’s just a little bit big and clever, after all?