Is 'The C Word' Sexist?

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I don't consider it sexist. It can be directed at both genders anyway.

Well bullocks (testicles) is used for unfavorable situations, but only in the UK. We need to start using it in the US.

Now calling someone a pussy is derogatory, because tom cats are just as wimpy as pussy cats, if not wimpier.



You have to be fair if you want to call it sexist.

If the word "dick" isn't sexist to you, then the "c-word" shouldn't be to you, either, for instance.

Always wondered why "cunt" is considered terrible, yet the same very people likely use the word "dick" in a derogatory way at the same time. Never understood the difference.

New thread, is it sexist that cunt is considered sexist but dick isn't?

I think guys started calling each other dicks long before women, so it's hard to make a case against it. It's also culturally acceptable to the point that it's allowed on network television, while I don't think I've ever heard c*nt other than HBO or Comedy Central's "After Hours" programming.

Well I use the word cunt to refer to men and women as much as I use the word dick to refer to men and women. Seems pretty equal to me.

EDIT: Also I wrote a dissertation on insulting language for my linguistics course and it concluded that the syllables that make up a word are actually what defines how offensive we perceive them to be.

That's why dick is seen as less offensive than cunt.

Mr F.:
Its sexist and the amount it is used does not make it any less sexist. I had to spend over an hour educating a friend of mine as to why the use of the word "Gay" to mean "Anything not good" (See: "That's totally gay" or equivalent) is homophobic. Context is everything, true, and many people who use it, including myself, do not intend to be sexist in the slightest. However, it is still sexist.

One might as well argue that "Faggot" is not homophobic because it is used by so many people in certain communities, or "Nigger" is not racist for the same reason. Context is everything but content still matters. It is not even a question of whether or not you are offending the person you are calling a cunt, it is a question of if others are finding your language offensive that are in earshot.

It is why I do not like eating out with my sisters. I swear a lot, although I try and limit this to when it is socially acceptable. I swear more around my sisters, they swear constantly. They have no issue with speaking the same as they do when at home as they do in public and I find it upsetting.

Ah, This argument. It is a word with baggage. Like I said, context matters, but context does not change the content. Intent matters, but intent is not everything. If you totally and utterly accidentally buy stolen goods you can still be arrested for handling them, even if that was not your intent, for ignorance is not an excuse in the eyes of the law.

If I call someone a fucking faggot it does not mater at all if I meant "You very nice person who I love dearly", the term is homophobic REGARDLESS of intent. Same with calling someone a cunt. The term is sexist, pure and simple, (As are terms like "Dick" but you know what, that argument is circular and pointless). The question is how much you care and do the people around you care?

For whilst I will not stand for the F word that I have typed multiple times during this post, I can call people cunts. And I do. I accept that it is sexist, I also accept that my close friends are all male and that no harm whatsoever is meant. However, I am still being sexist. Much like when I posted the words "Ding dong the bitch is dead" on FB, that was a sexist remark, it was a gendered insult. It was wrong.

Most of our insults are insulting. That is sorta the point of insults. Denying that the term being discussed is not sexist based on either intent or proliferation is utterly, UTTERLY pointless, for all of the arguments made above.

Unless you intend to indicate that the F word or the N word used above are not racist or homophobic. In which case you are quite simply wrong.

This. Well said.

Both the fact that the word Cunt is sexist, and the fact that it being sexist doesn't matter because insults are supposed to be BAD words. That's what makes them insults.

Although, everyone who is saying that dick = cunt, you're incorrect. Cock is the swear word equivalent of Cunt. Dick isn't one of the Heavy Seven, but Cock is, so Cock is the proper comparison.

Anyway, this is one of the annoying thing about the sexism debate. No one is saying anyone needs to STOP being sexist. One can recognize that something is offensive without needing to stop being offensive. As noted, the point of insults is to BE offensive.

However, understanding what a word means - and how it affects people and culture - is important. Once you understand what words mean, you can use them most effectively. Even if the word in question is "cunt curtains" - the most creative term for "labia" I've ever heard.

In North America, it's pretty much the worst word you could use on a woman. I know it's fairly commonly used elsewhere, but here it's pretty horrible. If someone said it to me, or someone I cared about (and meant it), there would probably be a punch to the face involved.

As a fellow North American, I second this.

Usually if someone calls me a bitch: playfully? - no problem (my college roommate and I called each other this daily because it became a term of endearment); seriously? - there is offense taken, but not to an absurd degree. But I do hate the word "cunt" something fierce: and if someone called me that, playfully or otherwise, it would mean a significant verbal or physical altercation.

On the question of whether it is sexist, ehhhh I don't know. It's the worst insult (bar none for women, I'm not sure for guys because it's never come up in conversation with male friends), so the fact that the "big bad" curse word is a part of female sexual anatomy could be considered relatively sexist. Sure, we throw "dick" around, but that doesn't have the same connotation of being quite as negative (probably because it's become pretty frequent in its use).

Pfft, no. We say "dick" all the time. What's the difference?

I'm Irish. I call everyone I think is being something worse than a fucking horrible sonnovabitch a cunt. Considering the ratio of men to women I think deserve that is somewhere around 70-30, no I don't think it's sexist.

Of course there's the argument of "Why is "dick" okay for men but cunt is not okay for women?"


Mr F.:

Odd name.

Listen, people are thrown out of whack by mere words way too often. Forget context for a moment. We shouldn't even BE so freaky-outy over this shit. The word does not outperform the deed, though. If someone gets raped, that's WAY more sexist than calling someone a cunt. No offense, but it makes logical sense to me.

My username is based on a pseudonym I occasionally write or blog under and is of no consequence.

The rest of your post is pointless. I am not stating that calling someone a cunt is the same as raping someone. I am really confused by your post. It also contains some stupid logic. If I were to get raped would that be sexist? Under the laws of this land the only person who could rape me would be another man. So yeah. Interesting that your mind makes the association between rape and a women being raped. Nothing wrong with that. It is how your brain has been wired since birth.

Honestly, when people call something sexist they are not saying it is on the same level as "all sexist acts ever". Calling a black guy the N word is racist. Starting a hate organization with the full intent of exterminating all black people is significantly more racist. Just because one is worse then the other does not mean that words should be ignored.

I am sorry, but your argument makes no logical sense.

To break it down.

"People get upset by words" - Uh, point? That is the point behind insults and since words convey meaning, people think about them.

"Context doesn't matter and we should not get upset by words" - Uh, what? Your statement indicates you think language doesn't matter much at all.

"The word is not worse then the thing the word describes" - This is where you really confuse me. Cunt is a term used for vagina. It is not a term used for rape and has no associations with rape, unless you associate vagina with rape. Which, if you do, is very bad.

No offense was taken, honestly. Your post did nothing but confuse me.

Asuka Soryu:
It's only sexist if you somehow think it's worse then saying/being called a "dick", "balls" or "ass hole".

How is ass hole sexist? Seriously? I do not think you quite thought that through.

No. Sexism (and every other -ism) is about intent. I could say that women are inherently inferior and should be considered slaves to us mighty man-folk, but if I didn't actually mean it (and I don't, mods or offended people) I'm not being sexist. Someone could take it that way, of course, but that would be because they're ignoring my intent.

Words are tools, they aren't anything on their own.

No. Its not. You can accidentally be sexist. You can accidentally be racist. You can accidentally be homophobic. actually, trying not to tread on peoples toes can sometimes be a bit of a challenge. The very language we use is important and can offend people.

I do not give a flying fuck about context, if people use the term faggot around me and do not justify themselves very, very quickly, they will end up on my black list. Because the term is homophobic. The word, by itself, carries weight and meaning. It is not a nice term. And, as much as faggot is homophobic due to the words history and its meaning, cunt is sexist due to its history and its meaning.

Proliferation does not matter, intent does not matter. You might have meant "I love you man, you are my best friend" but if you use a term which means something so totally different, particularly to people within the LGBTQ community, then you are simply not communicating properly and being homophobic, through choice of language. I have had friends who genuinely had to be sat aside to learn why calling all Arabs "Towelheads" or "Darkies" was racist. He could not understand. He was not racist, his parents were and that is just how they raised him (Army family). Those terms are racist.

And much like Towelhead, Darkie or Faggot are racist, racist and homophobic, Cunt is a sexist term.

Honestly, this thread has little of discussion value. The word is used as an insult, of course it is insulting, and the nature of the insult is "You are a vagina" so it equates vagina with bad and is therefore sexist. Like when people say "Thats so gay!" to mean "Thats really bad", its homophobic. Who gives a damn about intent.

Its content that matters. Ignorance is not innocence in the eyes of the law.

Mr F.:

Well, gee. I guess if you have to be abusive, condescending, and instigating to make a point, then so be it. I'll tell you what, F. If you get a warning for the report I just made, then you're right. However, if nothing comes of it, then you're wrong.


Kaulen Fuhs:
While I can completely agree with "whore" and "slut", I can't quite see the problem with "bitch". I guess you could say it gets used more often than male-centric equivalences like "dick", in which case I could understand not wanting to say it, but some insults are gender specific and have diametric opposites (unlike whore or slut) that makes it a little easier for me to let 'em loose.

Eh, it's a loaded word. There was a big hubbub just a couple of weeks ago in some literary circles because an author called a rude woman he met at a con "the bitch" and said things like "I imagined winning an award, turning to her and saying 'suck it, bitch!'" and similar things. And many bloggers (and fellow authors) pointed out that while the woman was rude and deserved a scathing blog post about her actions, the repeated use of the word "bitch" (and other cheap shots and generalisations regarding all womankind) kind of took away from his anger at her actions and instead seemed to give off a misogynistic message.

It's a controversial word, because it is still widely being used to put down women and support misogynistic statements, so it still has distasteful implications. Perhaps some day in the future, it will go the way of "bastard" and we'll be able to use it without evoking oppression.

Yeah, like I said, I can see it's prevalence over gendered-towards-men insults as a problem, so I get your point. I prefer to insult a person's intelligence, anyway :)

No, I don't think so. Also the word isn't strong. Maybe it's because I'm in Australia, and anybody who's being to Australian, especially the outer suburbs of large cities, you know that the word cunt is less of word, and more like a verbal tick, used like a full stop at the end of every sentence.

No, the word "cunt" isn't sexist. The context in which it's used in North America often is, though.

So, since every trampled upon group in North America is composed, entirely, of five year olds who try to ban words regardless of context, and refuse to consider and examine what someone is saying before jumping at the fact that they used a particular word, people have decided that it's THE WORST THING YOU CAN EVER SAY, except for all the other words that are supposedly THE WORST THING YOU CAN EVER SAY.

Context it always important to consider.

let me express my opinion using only the c-word *sees ban hammer looming* gee fine...

OT: i think Conan put it very nicely:

also, it's all in the context of the situation... men can still call other men cunts

'Straya Cunt!

I dunno, I always thought coffee was liked by both sexes these days.
Shows what I know.

On topic: It's contextual, like every other profanity and slur out there.

I think something a lot of people aren't considering is that cunt isn't consider sexist because it's usually directed at women, it's considered sexist because it's giving a negative connotation to a female body part. The dick comparison still stands though

That being said, I think that even if it's a tad sexist (something I'm not entirely sure about) it is hardly something worth getting worked up over. There's really not much of an imbalance between the genders in terms of their genitalia being used as insults, one isn't considered a complement while the other is an insult. It's more like genitals themselves have been given negative connotations. Which is... organist I guess?

You could say there's a discrepancy between the severity of using the word dick and cunt and that's sexist. But then that would mean it's how much worse an insult cunt's considered that is sexist rather than the use of the word. Which means that the people getting offended by it are being sexist. Clearly the least sexist thing to do at this point would be to use it as often as dick

As a Brit it is a staple part of my daily speach... hell, the lads-mag Front has a back page feature called 'Cunt of the Month,' where celebs are named and shamed for being right cunts...

And definitely not sexist... it cant be by definition!

I'm an American and I don't discriminate who I call a cunt by gender - male or female, everybody has the potential to be a cantankerous cunt. For me, its one of the highest insults I have for somebody. I never really heard of the word though until I came across some George Carlin, so it'd make sense if I use it differently than from most people.

same here actually. I try to reverse genders an insults though, when I insult a guy I stick to "C*nt" "B*tch" and the typical female ones and when I insult ladies I stick to "D*ck" "Pr*ck" and "Ass Munch"

And besides if you don't consider Phallic insults to be sexist why could "C*nt" be?

as a side note my highest insult and the most offensive to me is the N word. but I have a very specific definition to me the N word is for a person who is Ignorant, stupid, belligerent, cocky, full or themselves, arrogant and act like an animal. some body who robs a a drunk out of towner, beats him up when he trys to get his wallet back and then strips him naked in the street. that is a N****

I don't intend it to be sexist, but the more insane members of the PC crowd would be able to point and shout "sexist" at me. The reason being the vast majority of people I call 'cunt' (by some considerable margin) are men.

I don't remember the c word from my formative years, it seems to have only hitched a ride from the uk in the past 10 years.
As for exist, come on. Don't ever call a man a dick if you think cunt is sexist.

Not in Britain.

I once participated in a 67-post Facebook discussion about how much of a cunt Jeremy Kyle is. The word came up in basically every post.

Yeah, not exactly a big deal.

Jeez! You said that as if butter would melt. You should put something on the end of it mate!

Bug MuIdoon:
Sorry, I'm a little confused on how a few of those are sexist. A little crude maybe, but I can't physically see how "You have a delicious cunt." is sexist. "You have a tastey vagina" Is nothing but a compliment, surely? even the opposite, "you have a disgusting vagina" isn't sexist. It's not saying "you are X (derogatory) because of Y (gender)" It's just stating a fact. Same goes for "That shit is the tits!" tits are fantastic, as a huge percentage of the population will tell you! Not sure, on why saying so, is sexist. They're both more gender specific, sure, but not sexist. They're not the same thing.

Also, "Douche" I'm mainly more confused about this one because I don't know what one is, ha ha. I'm from England and douche isn't really used here (or at least to my knowledge) Isn't it a contraption used for DIY enemas, or something along those lines?

Sorry, not being an ass towards you. Just cuntfused a little by your post.

Outside writting a lengthy paper regarding the ever present evolution of language, common use, contextual meaning and intent behind use, the short of it would be that any words which create a distinction that can be tied to sexual identity can be considered sexist.

Absolutely retarded if you ask me. Equivilently, idiotic in my opinion. Also, moronic when you think about it. Generally speaking, utterly stupid.

Now all of those statements mean exactly the same thing. But people's perceptions to the phrases is what skews it toward the more offensive. Similarly, saying "delicious vagina", "delicious cunt", and "delicious pussy" all mean the same thing, but in current language form, one is more offensive than the next.

Given the popular use of the term sexism; normally only the negative connotations (such as "dirty cunt") receive the 'sexist' mark, while positive connotations (such as "delicious cunt") do not. Evident in your reponse regarding the positive public perceptions of "tits".

Are they the same thing? Yes and no. No in the sense that one is positive and one is negative. Yes in the sense that you tie the value (even if intended only within context) of the subject of conversation (in)directly to your perceptions of value you place on sexual identity. Or if you like, the way they act in which benefits you (cunts being awesome when you eat them and not so when people act like them).

Sexism is merely a distinction based upon the idea of sexual identity. "Men are on average taller then women" is a sexist remark. The whole "negative" attachment to the definition is simply another example of why phrases like I provided can be deemed a certain way.

Bah, I'm rambling and not making any sense, just like a woman! Maybe I need to go cunt some sheep and get a little sack time.

Sexist or no, I don't like swears that use genitals or other normal and otherwise completely fine concepts. It feels a bit like shaming.

More creative and hurtful swears please!

Hell no! How on earth could it be sexist?! If it is applied to anyone who's being, well, a cunt, then it isn't sexist.

Also it's not even particularly insulting... Americans just seem to be crybabies when it comes to words.

I shout that word at my TV all the time.

No, I don't consider it sexist, or even the most offensive word out there because it doesn't really have much meaning. If someone said something more specific about my physical features, I'd be much more offended and hurt.

Also from the UK.

Let me know when the word Dick becomes sexist then i will say Cunt is sexist, until then, no, screw that.

And calling a man a dick wouldn't mean it's sexist? Why sexism goes oneley oneway and not both... You could call me in the C-word and dick and it wouldn't mean any difference(im Latvian so mabey its my mentality(northeastern europe(and no its not Russia(they think it is but only because they invaded(and anexxed) us in the middle of WWII and "kept" us))) or something but no I am not usually offended(or any of my friends) by being called a genetalia...

I always grade these in my mind, there's actually a hyrarchy to these swears for me. ^^

here's a preview:
dick: one of the lower, basicly synonymous with jerk, being a dick is not a damning thing as the person in question may still have some redeeming traits.
he's just...kind of a dick.

asshole: stands above dick in the hyrarchy, an asshole is a scumbag who takes little to no consideration for others when going about his business, being an asshole basicly comes down to being a dick where your redeeming values can not compensate for your assholery.

cunt: one of the top tiers in the swear structure, a cunt is a weak excuse for a human being who bears no social or moral value to his fellow human beings.

Cunt is my favorite swear, bar none. Just love the way it sounds. Doesn't seem anymore sexiest than any other swear.

No, because by calling a man a c*** (which is more often the case, being my first point) you are not implying that he is like a female, or having qualities typically associated with females, but instead that he is capricious/unfair/something else. It is an insult entirely removed from its biological associations.

It's not a strong word, it's a word. Any cunting cunt can use the word cunt to call any cunt a cunt because it's not sexist. Saying it's sexist is cunting stupid and any cunt with basic critical thinking skills knows this.

If the word "dick" isn't sexist, then "cunt" isn't either. If it bothers you that much, you could just use the gender-neutral "asshole". They all mean the same thing anyway.

In the UK, the word has lost most of its harsh undertone. It can be used jokingly between friends, guys or gals, without offence. It's about the same as "son of a bi**h". There's not a hint of sexism at all.

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