If you’re interested in a serious look at the history, use, and impact of a curse word read Ascent of the A-Word by Geoffrey Nunberg. If you’re interested in a ridiculous look at history that incorporates a lot more swearing than you probably learned about in high school, check out ?*$@! – An Illustrative History in Profanity. It’s a book and smartphone app combination that looks at moments in history that just make you want to say ?*$@!.
?*$@! – An Illustrative History in Profanity is produced by sibling team KandK Harry[sic], and will feature more than 100 drawings by illustrator Michael McPhee depicting famous moments throughout history, as well as a few legends. McPhee runs the LaughterCraft account on Fiverr, a website where people offer to do thing for $5. In McPhee’s case, he makes custom drawings for people. The $5 offer is only good for a simple black and white line drawing, so it’s probably safe to say KandK are paying McPhee a bit more that $5 per illustration.
Interestingly, the book doesn’t feature any actual swearing. All the expletives are replaced with grawlixes, a string of symbols to represent swearing, like in the title. The creators say this is to let the reader fill in the blank with their own dirty word. To get a better idea of the tone of the book, and get a preview of some of the art, check out their Kickstarter video. There’s some language, but it’s all bleeped out:
- Dead Space 3 has profanity-laden voice commands
- Superf*ckers gets a web series!
- Arizona wanted to outlaw swearing online. $%&* that!