apathetic

adjective
ap·​a·​thet·​ic | \ ˌa-pə-ˈthe-tik How to pronounce apathetic (audio) \

Definition of apathetic

: affected by, characterized by, or displaying apathy : having or showing little or no interest, concern, or emotion apathetic voters apathetic indifference an apathetic attitude/response It's really easy to feel apathetic about politics and forget how much they affect our daily lives.— Emily Shwake NFL fans and media members are mostly apathetic toward the exhibition games.— Henry McKenna Even with Doppler radar and networks of spotters, many residents of Tornado Alley are surprisingly apathetic.— Warren Faidley She was listless, apathetic, calm with the calmness of a woman who knows she can suffer no further.— Frank Norris Children or teens who are … depressed and apathetic— Victoria L. Dunckley People with abnormally low levels of thyroid hormones (hypothyroidism) are often listless and apathetic; in fact, the symptoms may look very much like endogenous depression.— Lester Grinspoon et al. … there is no emotion and she remains apathetic to all around her.leitrimobserver.ie

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Other Words from apathetic

apathetically \ ˌa-​pə-​ˈthe-​ti-​k(ə-​)lē How to pronounce apathetic (audio) \ adverb

Choose the Right Synonym for apathetic

impassive, stoic, phlegmatic, apathetic, stolid mean unresponsive to something that might normally excite interest or emotion. impassive stresses the absence of any external sign of emotion in action or facial expression. met the news with an impassive look stoic implies an apparent indifference to pleasure or especially to pain often as a matter of principle or self-discipline. was resolutely stoic even in adversity phlegmatic implies a temperament or constitution hard to arouse. a phlegmatic man unmoved by tears apathetic may imply a puzzling or deplorable indifference or inertness. charitable appeals met an apathetic response stolid implies a habitual absence of interest, responsiveness, or curiosity. stolid workers wedded to routine

Discover if You're Apathetic

Apathy, or lack of emotion, is central to Albert Camus's famous novel The Stranger, in which the main character's indifference toward almost everything, including his mother's death, results in his imprisonment. We feel little sympathy for him, and may even feel antipathy, or dislike. The American voter is often called apathetic; of all the industrial democracies, only in America does half the adult population fail to vote in major elections. As you can see, apathetic isn't the opposite of pathetic, even though the a- that it begins with means "not" or "without".

Examples of apathetic in a Sentence

But contrary to popular belief, not all jocks are as apathetic as they are athletic. One such progressive player is Toni Smith, a college basketball player who turned her back on Old Glory every time the national anthem was played before her games last season. In a written statement, she cited America's systemic inequalities as her reason for not saluting the flag. Complex, June/July 2003 The disorder is sometimes inherited via a defective gene from one parent, and patients are usually spared signs of the disorder until they reach their fifties. Because the brain-cell loss occurs in parts of the brain that help regulate social behavior, personality changes are the most common manifestations of the illness. Patients tend to become either uninhibited or apathetic. — Bruce L. Miller, Discover, January 1998 But in cities such as Boston, Cincinnati, Oakland, San Francisco, and Seattle, reformers are trying to recharge an apathetic electorate by taking aim at the very process of voting itself. — Wilma Rule et al., Ms., September/October 1996 Young people are becoming increasingly apathetic. the apathetic attitude of the public Surprisingly, most Americans are apathetic toward this important issue.
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Recent Examples on the Web But such change is more difficult on a state and local level, where politicians are cemented in place and many residents are apathetic. Gromer Jeffers Jr., Dallas News, "Matthew McConaughey can’t beat Greg Abbott if Texas voters aren’t angry," 26 Apr. 2021 For one thing, Bolsonaro’s administration is notoriously apathetic or outright hostile to conservation efforts. Andre Pagliarini, The New Republic, "Bolsonaro Doesn’t Want to Save the Amazon. He Just Wants to Extort the Countries That Do.," 23 Apr. 2021 When Hawking was, by his own admission, an apathetic undergraduate at Oxford, cosmology was a drowsy discipline. Samanth Subramanian, The New Republic, "The Mysteries of Stephen Hawking’s Universe," 6 Apr. 2021 Active disease surveillance and prevention can blunt outbreaks, or at least stop health systems from becoming apathetic and dysfunctional when crises surface. New York Times, "The City Losing Its Children to H.I.V.," 31 Mar. 2021 The Celtics’ 113-108 loss to the Dallas Mavericks was indicative of what this team really is — below average and apathetic — unable to muster enough pride or respect for the game to play a full 48 minutes. BostonGlobe.com, "Another comeback fell short, and the Celtics’ rallies are no longer valiant," 31 Mar. 2021 The majority of Russians remain apathetic and deeply cynical about political change, attitudes also cultivated by Kremlin propaganda, experts said, which poses a huge challenge to Navalny’s efforts to mobilize them. Patrick Reevell, ABC News, "How Putin keeps his grip over Russia, even with support waning," 14 Mar. 2021 The City Council should listen to the voices of all stakeholders throughout the city — activists, pragmatists, the apathetic and the police themselves. Star Tribune, "Readers Write: 2020 election, Trump's potential loss, Minneapolis police," 25 Sep. 2020 With less than a month to go in the union vote, the 5,800-worker warehouse is split among supporters of the union, strong dissenters and an apathetic center that is growing sick of the national attention. New York Times, "How Biden Is Trying to Help Working-Class Voters in Red-State Alabama," 9 Mar. 2021

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'apathetic.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of apathetic

1692, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for apathetic

borrowed from New Latin apathēticus, from a- a- entry 2 + pathēticus pathetic, after apathīa apathy

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Time Traveler for apathetic

Time Traveler

The first known use of apathetic was in 1692

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Statistics for apathetic

Last Updated

4 May 2021

Cite this Entry

“Apathetic.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/apathetic. Accessed 14 May. 2021.

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More Definitions for apathetic

apathetic

adjective

English Language Learners Definition of apathetic

: not having or showing much emotion or interest

apathetic

adjective
ap·​a·​thet·​ic | \ ˌap-ə-ˈthet-ik How to pronounce apathetic (audio) \

Medical Definition of apathetic

: having or showing little or no feeling or emotion

Other Words from apathetic

apathetically \ -​i-​k(ə-​)lē How to pronounce apathetic (audio) \ adverb

Comments on apathetic

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