Charged language is language that contains implications beyond the meanings of words, and is often used to persuade or convey a specific way of thinking.
The concept of charged language might sound strange, but it is used in nearly every medium.
Some examples of charged language:
A politician who supports reform might be described as “enthusiastic about reform” by people who support them, or as “a fanatic about reform” by people who don’t support them (“fanatic” has a more negative connotation, and therefore describing the politician this way puts them in a negative light).
A young woman being described as “slender” or as “thin” (“thin” implies more of a sense of unhealthiness than “slender”).
Charged words are also words that have a certain shock value that can be used to strike an emotional chord with a person (charged words are in italics):
- The freedom fighters are no more than terrorists .
- This policy is a plague/cancer on our city.
- Maybe it was an accident, but he’s still a murderer.
- She’s an angel of a teacher.
Note: charged words are usually more negative, but if a word has a strong enough positive connotation (like “angel” or “patriot”) it can also be considered charged.