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I'm looking for a noun to describe the people who behave in certain tacky / uncouth ways. In particular, I'm not looking for a classist/racist slur, but rather something to more generally describe people who do culturally inappropriate things like take phone calls in movie theaters, play loud music late at night, or rev the engines of their expensive cars for attention. It should capture a certain brazen obnoxiousness and self-centeredness that would be considered embarrassing or shameful in polite society, no matter who does it.

Is there a word in American English that captures this sort of person? In Britian, I've heard there's "chav" which looks sort-of close. In Mexican Spanish, you might say "naco".

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    the common words that come to mind are a little vulgar: dick, douche, asshole. Less vulgar words are less common: lout, boor. They also tend to be gendered (in usage). – De Novo Jun 15 '18 at 21:39
  • "Boor" is really close. I don't think I've ever heard that word in casual conversation, though. "Douche" is also pretty close, and sufficiently pejorative, but also pretty general. Another word that occurred to me was "bro" (think "tech bro", "pharma bro", "frat bro"), but it's too gendered. – Alex Reinking Jun 15 '18 at 21:48
  • That surely is cocky behavior. But you are looking for a noun.... – peerless Jun 16 '18 at 3:08
  • Uncouth is a notion that is inherently bigoted, so you can't have an non-bigoted synonym. Any synonym will necessarily be a slur. Also, the examples you gave aren't what I'd call uncouth. Uncouth usually refers to gracelessness in more intimate settings such as during conversations or social events. Specifically, to graceless reactions or responses when directly involved with another person. Your examples are too anonymous and more about self interest. Uncouth people suffer from foot-in-mouth disease. I think there is a fairly clear distinction between being uncouth and being a jerk. – Phil Sweet Jun 16 '18 at 15:26
  • @Phil Sweet - I quite disagree that a lack of manners is an inherently bigoted idea, particularly along race, sex, gender, class, etc. lines. Anyone can be boorish, impolite, behave like a teenager, or generally ignore broad social decorum. Indeed "boor" is such a term, even though it is a little archaic. – Alex Reinking Jun 17 '18 at 2:04
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A generic word for a person like this would be a jerk.

Merriam Webster:

a : an annoyingly stupid or foolish person

b : an unlikable person; especially : one who is cruel, rude, or small-minded

A closer meaning would be a boor, but I rarely (never) hear this word in daily conversation. (I live in the southern United States.)

  • Hmm, a "jerk" seems too general to me. A parent who wears an explicit T-shirt while volunteering at an elementary school should fit under this description, even if they're quite polite to your face. – Alex Reinking Jun 15 '18 at 21:53
  • Jerk seems too (a) casual and (b) US-local to be a generic answer. – Michael Harvey Jun 16 '18 at 10:04
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    I think it works reasonably well with respect to the examples given, but to me, it isn't a synonym for uncouth. – Phil Sweet Jun 16 '18 at 15:30
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douchebag TFD

  1. n. a wretched and disgusting person; vile; contemptible
  • Or even just douche. – Stu W Jun 16 '18 at 15:40
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Some suggestions:

  • philistine

  • vulgarian

  • boor

  • narcissist

  • dummkopf

  • fool

  • simpleton

  • doofus

  • barbarian

  • ninny

  • slob

  • twit

  • tw#t (you know . . . wink, wink, nudge, nudge)

I'd link you to definitions, but I'm assuming you are willing and able to look 'em up yourself.

  • The OP needs one word. – Ahmed Jun 21 '18 at 14:14
  • @IqbalAhmedSiyal: I gave him a list comprising a series of one-word possibilities from which he can choose the one he thinks is most apt. I don't think I should be penalized for giving the OP many possible options from which to choose. If I didn't know better I'd guess that my downvoters were envious of the multiplicity of my suggested options. Don – rhetorician Jun 21 '18 at 15:33
  • Sorry, I get my down vote back, now. – Ahmed Jun 21 '18 at 15:42

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