When did a sweet word get so spicy?
Etymology: The word “daddy” has been on an adventure ever since it moved beyond the purely paternal in the 1920s. Starting, according to the Oxford English Dictionary, as a word “most commonly used in children’s language,” “daddy” has become a term of endearment when used between adults in non-familial or sexually intimate relationships. These relationships tend to be ones with potent power dynamics, commonly involving submission to masculine authority.
The internet has toyed with the term and subverted it. Twitter is awash with people addressing the likes of Barack Obama, Drake and Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson as “daddy.” Bernie Sanders is also not immune.
Words:Ellie Violet Bramley
This story appears in a print issue of Kinfolk. You’re welcome to read three stories from each print issue of Kinfolk for free. To continue reading this story, click here.
If you'd like to enjoy unlimited access to our online archive, subscribe here. If you’re already a subscriber, please sign in.
Alternatively, keep browsing Kinfolk.com to enjoy more free content.