She started thinking about all the euphemisms for death, all the anxious taboos that had always fascinated her. It was too bad you could never have an intelligent discussion on the subject. People were either too young or too old, or else they didn't have time.
What a strange world it is where you can have as much sex as you like but love is taboo. I'm talking about the real thing, the grand passion, which may not allow affection or convenience or happiness. The truth is that love smashes into your life like an ice floe, and even if your heart is built like the Titanic you go down. That's the size of it, the immensity of it. It's not proper, it's not clean, it's not containable.
Stigma's power lies in silence. The silence that persists when discussion and action should be taking place. The silence one imposes on another for speaking up on a taboo subject, branding them with a label until they are rendered mute or preferably unheard.
I touched his hand, carefully. Not too intimate, but not some half-assed there-there pat, either. Would he understand? Usually the thought process for a seventeen-year-old boy went girl touching me>omg>boner.
Customs, morals—is there a difference? Woman, do you realize what you are doing? Here, by the grace of God and an inside straight, we have a personality untouched by the psychotic taboos of our tribe—and you want to turn him into a carbon copy of every fourth-rate conformist in this frightened land! Why don’t you go whole hog? Get him a brief case and make him carry it wherever he goes—make him feel shame if he doesn’t have it.
He says, "I would walk around the township and I could point them out, which girls had been abused. You could see it in them. There's a luminosity to incest. The taboo is so strong and the damage so great. Luminosity--do you understand? It travels across oceans and down generations. They shine with it.
In the literary world today, Christianity has pretty well replaced sex as the present pet taboo, not only because Christianity is so often distorted by Christians as well as non-Christians, but because it is too wild and free for the timid.