Slurs and Expressivity
Semantics and Beyond
Slurs and Expressivity: Semantics and Beyond, edited by Eleonora Orlando and Andres Saab,focuses on the analysis of the expressive aspects of slur-words, namely, those words prima facie related to the conveyance of contemptuous or derogatory feelings for the members of a certain group of people identified in terms of their ethnicity, sexual orientation, religion, political ideology, and other personal qualities. In as far as they are used to express emotional attitudes, slurs are, thus, a kind of expressive words. This collection provides different hypotheses regarding the way in which the expressive import of slurs and other related expressive words is semantically encoded in the grammar and how their meaning impacts other aspects related to their use in different practices of linguistic communication. These linguistic practices are usually, but not always, related to segregation and discrimination of particular human groups. Therefore, any contribution to the theory of slur meaning is, directly or indirectly, also a contribution to a better understanding of those practices and to finding the best way to eradicate them.