Sunday, February 6, 2011
The media is often accused of 'dumbing down' culture to the detriment of all concerned. Historically, at a linguistic level, animals don't come out of this well - the stupid are described as 'bovine', the mindless as 'sheep', the fat and lazy as 'porcine', etc. When animal traits or characteristics are assigned to people, this is usually in a negative way. Ok, 'foxy' could be seen as a compliment, but that's a bit 70s and porny. Even a reference to 'animal instincts' etc is a derogatory norm.