Ashley Montagu

Watch your mouth

Ashley Montagu wrote a thoroughgoing and readable study of our potty-mouth propensities in The Anatomy of Swearing (1967). Jesse Sheidlower published a book on our favorite expletive, The F Word, in 2009 (reviewed here). Now Grant Barrett, a lexicographer, a trained professional, not a smut hound, people, wants to know what bad words you favor, when you use them, and with whom.

The foundation of his research project is "The Long Bleep Questionnaire," which should not occupy a great...