mi·​sog·​y·​ny | \ mə-ˈsä-jə-nē How to pronounce misogyny (audio) \

Definition of misogyny

: hatred of, aversion to, or prejudice against women a culture that promotes violence and misogyny … battled the personal demons of alcoholism, racism, and misogyny.— James Kaplan Her books are pervaded by a deep pessimism and an equally profound misogyny.— Janet Malcolm … a mission to expose the common cord that nourishes capitalism, misogyny, classism, and fat hatred …— Anastasia Higginbotham also : something (such as speech or behavior) that reflects and fosters misogyny Cosloy's suggestion for a solution to misogyny in song—women should make their own records!—is scurrilous as long as men are not ready to pass the mike. — Evelyn McDonnell Dr [Una] McIlvenna says misogyny has always been rife. "There's always been misogyny in news reporting, both victim-blaming and in the coverage of women who commit crimes." — Lisa Needham

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The (Etymological) Roots of Misogyny

Misogyny may be distinguished from the closely related word sexism, which signifies discrimination based on sex (although it most frequently refers to discrimination against women) and also carries the meaning “behavior, conditions, or attitudes that foster stereotypes of social roles based on sex.”

Misogyny refers specifically to a hatred of women. The word is formed from the Greek roots misein (“to hate”) and gynē (“woman”). Each of these roots can be found in other English words, both common and obscure. Gynē helped to form gynecologist and androgynous, and misein can be found in such words as misoneism (“a hatred, fear, or intolerance of innovation or change”) and misandry (“a hatred of men”).

Examples of misogyny in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web One of the more famous incidents came when star Nora Dunn boycotted the shock-comic Andrew Dice Clay to protest his misogyny. Washington Post, 7 May 2021 Beyond questions of individual safety, the ICFJ and UNESCO study finds that attacks on women journalists reveal an enduring misogyny that trickles down from the most powerful in society -- political leaders -- and which threatens democracy itself. Adie Vanessa Offiong, CNN, 3 May 2021 Like many a young feminist college student, Bechdel hated the casual misogyny of On the Road. Eliana Dockterman, Time, 3 May 2021 To be clear, none of them were ugly; this was just our attempt to highlight and challenge the inherent misogyny of the sketch world! Casey Wilson, Vulture, 30 Apr. 2021 But, as a whole, the energy works in this story of mismatched lovers, even as the inherent misogyny of Shakespeare’s 16th-century comedy becomes increasingly off-putting. Matthew J. Palm, orlandosentinel.com, 3 Apr. 2021 Yes, absolutely, a group of men engaging in gang-ridicule of women over their judgment, style, cooking and weight is misogyny. Washington Post, 5 Mar. 2021 The doofus whose fedora barely disguises his misogyny? Nate Jones, Vulture, 1 Apr. 2021 The incriminating lyrics examined in the study range from explicit violence against women to more dangerous implicit misogyny with lyrics less likely to associate women with competence and intelligence. Gail Mitchell, Billboard, 30 Mar. 2021

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'misogyny.' 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 misogyny

circa 1656, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for misogyny

Greek misogynia, from misein to hate + gynē woman — more at queen

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Learn More About misogyny

Time Traveler for misogyny

Time Traveler

The first known use of misogyny was circa 1656

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Statistics for misogyny

Last Updated

21 Jun 2021

Cite this Entry

“Misogyny.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/misogyny. Accessed 21 Jun. 2021.

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More from Merriam-Webster on misogyny

Nglish: Translation of misogyny for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of misogyny for Arabic Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about misogyny


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