Everything Language and Grammar

Getting Emotional

Posted by languageandgrammar on August 10, 2009

Humans are, by their nature, emotional beings, and the emotions we exhibit are numerous. Why is it then that we use the word emotional as a synonym for crying in many instances?

A person who cries is described as someone who became emotional–whether he’s crying out of joy or sadness. It’s said about a co-worker who announces he got a promotion, a professional athlete who’s been traded, or a political figure at a news conference.

Someone who yells in anger, though,  is not described as someone who became emotional. Someone who jumps for joy is not described as someone who became emotional. Someone who shakes his head in disgust is never viewed as someone who became emotional.

Do we not understand that there are numerous displays of emotions, or are we ashamed of crying to the point that we describe a crying person as becoming emotional to save him the shame associated with saying that the person was crying?

–Paul

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2 Responses to “Getting Emotional”

  1. Prashant said

    I always thought that the emotional and emotion are two different words with different meanings – just like economic and economical are.

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