[Corpora-List] Categories of insults

Darren Cook darren at dcook.org
Tue Apr 15 04:38:25 CEST 2014

> I don't think anyone has mentioned yet insults that use what would
> otherwise be non-insult words, but where the entire cultural context
> implies something insulting:
> ...

I'm glad that has been brought up. Insults do not imply negative sentiment words (nor do negative sentiment words imply an insult).

In addition to the joke put-downs you gave, there is also sarcasm ("Yeah, sure, I want to go out with a find-upstanding member of the community like you."), but another class of insults can use all positive words and no sarcasm:

I'm sure you will make a fine Mc.Donalds crew member.

This could be insulting their ambition, or their academic prowess. But, instead, it could be said by a proud parent to a teenager upon getting their first part-time job. It could simply be a complement on the person's ability to work in a team. In the hands of certain parents it might even be all three at once.


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