When I gave a fuck I was taken for granted but when I said fuck it I become the bad guy shirt is a funny shirt that you should have. In other languages there are some other prominent categories. Prostitution is a common one, and diseases are prominent in Dutch. In Swedish, Canadian French and others the religious category is much more prominent than in English. However in almost all cases swearwords can be used with meanings nothing to do with their original meaning area. ‘Fuck off’ for instance means ‘go away’; ‘fucked up’ means ‘messed up’, ‘what the fuck’ expresses consternation. None of these have to do with sex. On the other hand ‘fuck’ is still used to refer to sex as well. Ultimately it is a psychological and sociological question, not a linguistic one, why particular cultures have the taboo language subjects they do. There are then linguistic questions such as do swearword verbs work syntactically the same as ordinary verbs, what position in a series of adjectives a swearword adjective would go, etc., but these are not getting at why ‘fuck’ is a ‘bad word’.
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