Tag Archives: France Linguistics

Piss off? Annoy? Shit on? Why Macron’s use of the French swear word ‘emmerder’ is so hard to translate

Pierre-Yves Modicom, Université Bordeaux Montaigne When French president Emmanuel Macron vowed to “emmerder” the unvaccinated in France, he did not just throw down the gauntlet on his Covid policies, he also sparked a fervent linguistic debate. The word emmerder is a verb derived from the noun merde, which in English literally translates to “shit”. But properly translating emmerder is far …

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