Definition of dysphemism in English:

Share this entry

dysphemism

Pronunciation: /ˈdisfəˌmizəm/

noun

A derogatory or unpleasant term used instead of a pleasant or neutral one, such as “loony bin” for “mental hospital.”. The opposite of euphemism.
Example sentences
  • Aside from this confusion, this use of homicide as a dysphemism for suicide obscures the singular depravity of suicide terrorism.
  • Of course, this comes from the rebel psychologist for whom diagnostic psychiatry is an authoritarian priesthood, and ‘insanity’ an institutional dysphemism for ‘minority.’
  • Now the honest word secondhand is relegated to the ash heap of dysphemism.

For editors and proofreaders

Syllabification: dys·phe·mism

Share this entry
 

What do you find interesting about this word or phrase?

Comments that don't adhere to our Community Guidelines may be moderated or removed.