What do you call a person who hates everyone but himself? I'm looking for a single word for this.
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I believe the correct word would be misanthrope or misanthropist.
As @theUg suggests, I am elaborating my explanation. Following are the reasons why I believe misanthrope should be the correct word here:
Note: this echoes several other answers and comments, but I had felt most of them lacked detail, and as I became interested in this topic I decided to elaborate.
A misanthrope would be the most fitting term, but with large shadow of philosophy hanging over, it may require deeper understanding, although in common usage and less demanding context, the somewhat pedantic details may be overlooked.
First ingredient in our recipe would be the “hatred of mankind”. Dictionaries differ in their interpretation of misanthropy, from mere “dislike” in OED’s definition, to “mistrust”, to the full-on “hatred” in M-W’s. But the etymology is unambiguously clear:
With that taken care of, the next step is exclusion of self from universal loathing. That is where things become complicated, as misanthropy can come in many flavours, and, on the other hand, some ideas that may look like misanthropy, are not (that is why M-W’s synonymizing of misanthrope with the words like cynic, or pessimist is less than responsible).
One early definition of misanthropy can be found in Plato’s dialogue Phaedo:
In essence, it is about someone placing unrealistic expectations on others, and then crushing disillusionment when those fail. It does not imply that the doubts of the worth of humankind extend on the subject, but it may force one to separate from society. However, that would be a key point, as according to Aristotle’s Politics, a solitary man is not a man at all (from 1598 translation titled Aristotles Politiques, or Discourses of Government):
Thus, Aristotelian qualification would allow a reclusive misanthrope to avoid a pitfall of intellectual dishonesty (“I hate all of the humanity, except myself, though I am part of that very humanity”), or becoming a pitiful wreck as Alceste, the character from Molière’s satire Le Misanthrope, had. And, on the subject of gods, one can be auto-theistic misanthrope. Nietzschean idea of Übermensch and other forms of radical individualism were also criticized for that sort of disregard for humanity.
On the other hand, even though Schopenhauer proclaimed “human existence must be a kind of error”, misanthropy does not necessarily mean malicious hatred of others. We could all be failed beings, doomed to suffer together.
Finally, why I think the sorts of narcissistic misanthrope would not work. Basically, it is an oxymoron. Misanthrope despises humankind, and dislikes the idea of society, but narcissists, “unethical” egoists, megalomaniacs and other radically-selfish types, either strive for validation from society, or its subjugation or exploitation.
Like many other answers here, this one is not perfect, but how about
This was my initial response, and a simple Google search reveals that sociopathy is thought of as a severe form of antisocial personality disorder, so it seems like Jim and I are on the same track.
From Merriam-Webster online:
I'm not sure if my assessment of a sociopath is right, and it may be too strong a word for what you intended, and also come with some connotations about destructive behavior that you do not intend, but that's all I got. As stated, it seems English has no perfect word to answer your question. Misanthrope, suggested above, is the next closest thing I can think of to the suggestions I have given.
For reference, here's a very interesting breakdown of the related psychological disorders
'Narcissist' (defined as 'someone who loves oneself excessively') seems to be the word that fits your description.
I don't believe that there is one word that can definitively say that "someone hates everyone else, but himself" because there is some ambiguity concerning how that person feels about himself. So now you are limited to words that describe someone who hates everyone else . . .
I think this is an unanswerable question.
Although this question seems to be without a clear answer, I believe the most concise way to convey such an individual would be to call the individual a "narcissistic misanthrope."
Such a person may suffer from Antisocial Personality Disorder (ASPD).
In a Wikipedia citation of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders Fourth edition Text Revision (DSM-IV-TR) American Psychiatric Association (2000) pp. 645–650, ASPD is described an Axis II personality disorder characterized by
Therefore, one might say he hates everybody else.
Per Wikipedia, again:
I propose the term Dissocial but I don't consider this adjective alone, being a neologism (to common usage, anyway), to be as strong as describing the person as one who suffers from ASPD. You may find it to be acceptable as an answer to your question.
Urban Dictionary describes a disanthrope as a person who is discordant with mankind. In the present context, I interpret this as someone who considers himself apart from mankind, and the term is also consistent with the more modern usage of "dis", in that he is dismissive (or disrespectful) of mankind. But this doesn't address how the "dissocial person" hates everyone but himself (unless you consider that dis- implies that he is 'apart' or 'separate' from). So I will stand by my neologism - dissocial.
Another possibility is
callous: Emotionally hardened; unfeeling and indifferent to the suffering/feelings of others. Not quite hateful, but close.
You might call such a person a scrooge. A scrooge (or Scrooge), named for Charles Dickens' Ebenezer Scrooge from his A Christmas Carol, is "A miserly, selfish person." More detail on the Ebenezer Scrooge character from Wikipedia:
The Wikipedia entry goes on to describe how "[h]is last name has come into the English language as a byword for miserliness and misanthropy, traits displayed by Scrooge in the exaggerated manner for which Dickens is well-known."
Scrooge certainly behaved hatefully towards everyone he encountered. I wouldn't go so far as to say that he loved himself, but he certainly despised everyone else more than he did himself.
Even though I think this question might be unanswerable... How about psychotic...?
a runner up might be nihilist (but a nihilist can want the destruction of everything including themselves)
protected by Mari-Lou A Sep 20 '14 at 7:08
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