ADVANTAGES

Newspaper headlines often use the phrase 'the c-word' to pun on other contentious terms beginning with that letter: "the phrase 'the c-word' is sometimes deliberately used to mean something else, while exploiting the intertextuality of the original meaning" (Ruth Wajnryb, 2004); for example 's headline (Andrea Hubert, 2013), in which Moretz compared the c-word in America and the UK: "cunt is a funny word. It's a strong word, sure, but more so in America. In England it's just like any other curse word". The most common example of this is 'Christmas', which, like 'cancer', can be seen as an alternative 'c-word'. The 2001 headline , for example, is about the removal of the word 'Christmas' from secular greetings cards. In the article, Richard Littlejohn asks, rhetorically: "Who, exactly, is offended by the C-word?". He has fun inventing phrases such as "Father C-word", "C-word Eve", and "C-word Day", all attempts to highlight the absurdity of banning the word 'Christmas'. Less festively, he also bemoans the culture of liberalism, 'political correctness', and 'istas' (in other words, his usual targets), asking: "How on earth do you describe these New Scrooges? Difficult, I know. But try the other C-word". As if that wasn't enough, Littlejohn went on to essentially repeat himself two Christmases later, in another article also headlined ("the dreaded C Word [...] Christmas", 2003). Catherine Bennett, in an article also headlined (in , 2003), also criticised the censorship of 'Christmas'. Tim Rider's article (2004) was also about the contentiousness of 'Christmas': "They do not want any mention of what they call the C-Word because they are worried it will offend followers of other faiths" (2004), as was the article (in , 2004) which urged readers to say 'Christmas' despite its controversy. Yet another article, headlined (2004) also concerned the festive season: "Ditch the dreams of a white Christmas", as did Jay Nordlinger's article ("people could not bring themselves to utter the C-word", 2003). used the headline on the front page of its 2013 Christmas gift issue (13/11/2013). After TV presenter Andrew Strauss called Kevin Pietersen a 'cunt', punned that he had been called "charming": "Kevin Pietersen was described live on air by Piers Morgan as "charming". Cricket experts were aghast at the "inappropriate use of the c-word"", in a spoof article headlined (2014).

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