Chemeteva Yu.V., Davydova M.L. Euphemization of Legal Terms in Respect of the “Third Age”: the Need and Limits

DOI: https://doi.org/10.15688/lp.jvolsu.2018.2.8

Yuliya V. Chemeteva
Master Student, Department of Constitutional and Municipal Law, Volgograd State University
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Prosp. Universitetsky, 100, 400062 Volgograd, Russian Federation

Marina L. Davydova
Doctor of Sciences (Jurisprudence), Professor, Head of Department of Constitutional and Municipal Law, Volgograd State University

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Prosp. Universitetsky, 100, 400062 Volgograd, Russian Federation


Abstract. The article deals with the problem of "roughness" of some legal terms used in the pension legislation of the Russian Federation, as well as in the legislation establishing rules for people with disabilities. There are extracts from various legal sources, where such incorrect terms as "period of survival", "age of survival", "grandfather", "grandmother", "invalid", "old age pension", "age", etc. The incorrect use of those terms is analyzed from the point of view of modern linguistic and social developments. The positive and negative aspects of the use of diminutive forms as a way to mitigate the "rough" legal terminology are substantiated. As a means of adaptation of outdated and having become discordant terms such stylistic device as euphemization is considered, which allows to construct a neutral or positive connotation of the legal term. Examples of the use of euphemisms in legislative texts are given, and their adequacy in terms of political correctness and modern language trends is analyzed. It is noted that the tendency to euphemization is peculiar to the Russian pension legislation, however, today it is not fully realized. Examples of "smoothing" of rough terms in legislative acts are given, in particular, softening of the term "old age" in Federal laws "on labor pensions in the Russian Federation" and "on state pension provision in the Russian Federation". Social factors (increase in life expectancy of people, period of their working capacity, quality of life) influencing change of understanding of connotative meaning of the term "old age" are pointed out. Possible variants of the euphemization of the term "old-age pension" in the pension legislation are proposed allowing to replace this term with a more harmonious word.

Key words: legal term, euphemism, the old-age pension, period of survival, the disabled, people with disabilities, the "third age", political correctness.

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